Gone Lawn
a journal of poetry and progressive fiction
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Gone Lawn 28
Spring, 2018

Featured painting, Etude Catalan 1 by Jean Wolff.

New Works

Eleanor Mae

Hard Magic


For innocence, pour warm milk into a rabbit skull. Stir with an undyed skein of wool, singing.
For awakening, pour the milk over pearls and brittle stars. Awakening is beautiful! Now swallow the mixture. Awakening is painful. Collect the dregs in a china cup; eat that too, cup included. Awakening is torture.
For desire, fill the unwashed rabbit skull with coconut rum and club sweat. Add shining teeth and cheap aftershave. Let stew in a satin negligee for one summer, saxophone-heavy eighties movie soundtracks playing in the background.
For sex, add white knuckles.

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Love is hard magic. Leave your mixture in a lightning storm for seven nights; gather what remains. Wrap it in bedsheets; feed it sweet vanilla. Try to fatten it, even if half of what you give it will be poison.
Fertility; harder magic still. Grind your mixture to dust; mix with mistletoe and hazels to form a heart. Hang your heart from two crossed fingers, and wait. This magic is very imprecise.

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To cool love, bury your mixture in a snowbank. Cover with overdue bills and a layer of fat; wrap tight with strips of wedding dress.
To add contempt, flood your mixture. Let it freeze solid. Stab with a fresh knife every day, until it's full of cracks.

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Killing something you loved; the hardest magic.
Take what remains of your mixture; wrap in coffin-silk and catgut. Scatter salt and egret feathers all around; weigh the bundle with lilies and unborn dreams, expressed in chrysalids.
Bury at sea, or burn to ash. Never mark the place you left it on a map. You will carry a scar that corresponds to its exact coordinates, all the days of your life.

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Banishing grief; impossible. Don't try.



Eleanor Mae lives in Italy. She has been/will be published in The Forge Literary Magazine, Madcap Review and Palooka, among others.