Isobel O’Hare

Isobel O’Hare is a Pushcart-nominated poet and essayist who has dual Irish and American citizenship. O’Hare is the author of the chapbooks Wild Materials (published in 2015 by Zoo Cake Press) and The Garden Inside Her (published in 2016 by Ladybox Books). She lives in Oakland, California.




the land is indifferent to her

no point in memorizing the rules

they shift like shafts of light across the mountains                   every time she looks up

the game begins anew


some kind of heartbreak machinery


the jagged lines of the gorge disorient her vision                     he guides her no more


this is a blue field                                                                     a weeping ground


every flower                                                                            born from the rot of a woman



wild girl


that’s how she is described: a wild girl.

she was a wild girl. perhaps she laughed

too loudly, easily, at the wrong man.

maybe she bragged about living alone,

off-the-grid—that she would never marry.

this ain’t a courtship, it’s a hunting ground,

whether or not you own these acres here.

her body hides in death as it did in life:

in the backseat of a Volkswagen

so the wife, waving goodbye from the porch,

won’t know that she is along for the ride.

only rabbits darting through the brush

know her blood now, they smell it on the dirt,

they taste sweet droplets as they fall with rain

from sheltering lavender. folks say the sky

is bigger here and so impossibly blue.



ice fishing


doctor pushes slender needle

through flesh of back


pppppfishes feel what lake feels


scream coming from own mouth

clichéd on operating table


            fishes surrender


teeth chatter so violent

almost break like delicate china


body is shuddering earth










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