Their Destroyed Mouths – by Bryanna Licciardi

After Rosario Castellanos

still wanted to climb
inside my mouth,
tongues that would have
made a luxury of me.

Once, they pillaged my body
so that no other body
would want me.
And when I felt ruined,
they called it love.

But now, it’s words
like easy snow
shoveled into the mouth
that make their destruction
look stunning.


Bryanna Licciardi has received an MFA in poetry from Emerson College and is currently pursuing a PhD in Literacy Studies from Middle Tennessee State University. Her debut chapbook Skin Splitting (Finishing Line Press, 2017) is now available for purchase. A Pushcart Prize nominee, Bryanna has had work appear in journals such as Poetry Quarterly, BlazeVOX, Adirondack Review, and Cleaver Magazine. Check out to learn more.