Emily Brandt

Secret Garden


Stock up on caffeine wander on a floor look to former notes from former self or friend and revise revise rewrite revise and still it looks exactly the same as your grandmother’s Alzheimer’s scribble / her voice recorded on a handheld device with no playback potential.

There are methods for recording that can structure your thoughts as digital or analog codes.

Can “secret garden” refer to anything other than genitals?

Some might say that “analog codes” is a misnomer and thereby sever the contract by which this structure is standing.

I woke up in a pool of water each day for a month and very few things changed.

I embellish my thesis again and again and very few things changed.

I draw parallels between this and that (pronouns replacing injustices too painful to speak of).

I sacrifice the “I” which truly is not possible and so my sacrifice goes unaccepted by the gods.

Late this afternoon I broke open the net around a bunch of clementines.
There were maybe 14 clementines inside. Maybe twenty.
I bought these solely for the purpose of experiencing breaking open the net.
I do not like fruit, but I like the smell so much I find the key.

If it says add three cups of Epsom salt, I surely need four.
The term ally applies most aptly to magnesium.
After soaking my thirst is desert deep / a thirst that shatters.

           I understand the power of hydration, but not the purpose. Why does solid body need so much liquid and don’t say we are 70% water because that is a schoolboy lie.

There’s no other way to say what’s next in this nonfictional mythology: A man rapes a woman.
A first draft reads: a man rapes a woman and nothing happens to him. Nothing! happens to him.
A revision reads: what happens to a man after he rapes a woman?
A revision replaces “rapes” with “sexually assaults.” A headline rewrites “has sex with.”
I know what happens to a woman. At least three hundred versions of I know.
It’s not hyperbole. I can share a hyperlink.

Omit previous unreadable stanza. Boil a pot of water for dinner. Search “recipe”
and be utterly overwhelmed.

Get the combination of chemicals wrong and everything glacial*.  See the term *comes crashing down.

Here a hologram
A sea of ivy
Lift your head
No no tuck it
No no  I


which comes with certain privilege
including freedom and a radio antennae.

I would like to collaborate with you but I don’t think we are a match.

Emily Brandt

Emily Brandt is the author of three chapbooks, most recently Sleeptalk or Not At All from Horse Less Press. Emily is a co-founding editor of No, Dear and Web Acquisitions Editor for VIDA. She lives and teaches in Brooklyn.