These shapeshifting prose poems from Christina Rauh Fishburne open with “Gull (Take One):”
No net ensnares me. I’ve won prizes for my pretense at soaring. It’s shameful—the praise I get for imitation. I have one job: Be Everything At All Times. Others pass by, more qualified, more elegant in their execution, and I follow with my smoke and mirrors, my costumes, my emergence from black satin hats.
Rauh’s pieces flit between the other-world of the bird, and the human world of a woman who is quick, in “”Gull (Take Four),” to assert, “Someone is crying. It isn’t me.” But like the changing titular birds of these poems, don’t be too quick to try to pin down its human narrator:
It’s perfectly correct to have many faces: the collection of clouds, the powerful falls ending in frothy madness, the silent filter of carbon and lime, the ancient waiting room of a calcium tower, the uncontained crush of salty abandonment. – excerpt, “Water”