Cotton Xenomorph is a new literary journal produced with the mission to showcase new, and ecstatic art while reducing language of oppression in our community. We are dedicated to uplifting new and established voices while engaging in thoughtful conversation around social justice.

Ghazal for Virtue

By Catherine Chambers

My whole young life I wished for slender fingers to dwindle
on, say, piano keys. The piano of my dreams, sits idle. 

The space between my Head Line and Life Line indicates
a risk-taking personality. One who champs at their bridle.

My heart line zooms up towards my index finger,
to indicate a romantic nature: not a heart that lies idle.

A flat line. A fleshy Mount of Venus at the base of my thumb
sits in stark contrast to weight lifting callouses idling.

My hands find use; I cut my lover’s hair, give him hand-jobs, write.
I hear my white grandma saying the devil made my hands idle.

Martyrdom is no good if your virtue isn’t intact, see:
Saint Catherine on her spiked wheel, made idol.


Catherine Chambers is an Asian-American mermaid living in Texas with her dog, Bob Dylan. She attends the University of Southern Maine Stonecoast MFA program, and tweets about Virgo stuff at @CatChamberz

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