From Mars by Megan Pinto
Editor-in-chief Jennifer A. Howard on today’s bonus story: Somehow, with a magic I can’t parse and in only 122 words, Megan Pinto gives us enough heartbreak to fill another planet.
Each person has their own reason: the man sitting next to me drove his wife into a tree, and the lady scaling that volcano just miscarried. The stars cannot understand our grief, so I take off my space suit and show them my skin, places I’ve ripped into again and again. You’ve told me you cannot love me, and I’m trying to understand but it hurts. Out here, Earth looks tiny—like a pretty, marbled thing, and you are so far away. It helps to know you cannot see me now, a strange animal of space who confuses the stars, who loves you not like the earth’s sweet flowers or meadows of green—but only with these animal hands, this animal grief.
Megan Pinto's poems are forthcoming in Ploughshares, Indiana Review, and Four Way Review. She is a Playmakers Playwright and Resident Artist at the Purple Rose Theatre Company, and an Artist-in-Residence at The Tank NYC. She received her MFA in poetry from Warren Wilson.