“Palmistry” by Maureen Daniels

She stretches her arms

toward the maddening stars.


Her lips which no longer love me

cower against her teeth


when I smile in the direction

she turns her face,


the way a bird might flinch

from a startling sound.


Today we sat by the sea

without speaking,


and I leaned against

the brown warmth of her skin,


so dizzy from what I wanted

and I wondered, with the breeze


in the salt twists of her hair,

those visionary palms, and her belly


that breathed as if it were holding

something it could not release,


if this was the closest I would get

to what I imagine is love.










Maureen Daniels grew up in England and Northern California. She has a B.A. from CUNY Hunter College and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from CUNY City College. She is the winner of The Doris Lipmann Prize, The Stark Short Fiction Award, The Audre Lorde Award, and others. Her poems and short stories have appeared in publications such as Lambda Literary, Pindeldyboz, Nibble, Scapegoat Review, and others. She currently lives in New York City with her family and a Dalmatian named Pink.