Cynthia Cruz



In the Porcelain Room, everything
Is broken, but terribly beautiful. 

Bruises and

Faces of make-up and small
Tattoos of death masks and stars. 

The girls and women enter the room, 
Gloved and covered in layers of lace. 

Mothers and women
Without any children. 

We stand in silence,
Our mouths painted crimson. 

We are alone inside this, 
What once was monstrous 

Silence, but what is now
A cream and white procession. 

A silvering, like an endless poem
That goes on forever, each woman’s voice 

Adding her own jeweled song
To the procession until we are one,

Tethered together by our shared tales of terror
And trauma, bled 

Together, a new family
Of voices. Like children singing 

In choir, or a small band of girls
Erupting in joy 

As they discover
Their own true voice.


CYNTHIA CRUZ is the author of four collections of poetry: Ruin, The Glimmering RoomWunderkammer, and How the End Begins. Her essays, interviews and art writing have been published in The Los Angeles Review of Books, Guernica, and Hyperallergic. Cruz has received fellowships from Yaddo and the MacDowell Colony as well as a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University. She has an MFA in Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and an MFA in Art Criticism & Writing from the School of Visual Arts.


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