Michelle Bailat-Jones is a translator and writer living in Switzerland. Her novel, Fog Island Mountains (Tantor, 2014) won the 2013 Christopher Doheny Award from The Center for Fiction in NYC. She has translated two novels from celebrated Swiss author Charles Ferdinand Ramuz, Beauty on Earth (Onesuch Press, 2013) and What if the Sun… (Onesuch Press, 2016) as well as work from Claude Cahun, Julia Allard Daudet, Laure Mi-Hyun Croset, Timba Bema, and Céline Cerny. Her fiction, translations, poetry, and criticism have appeared in The Kenyon Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, The Rumpus, Necessary Fiction, The Quarterly Conversation, Cerise Press, Two Serious Ladies and PANK.
The steel point against the paper,
the flash and arc. A caliper walk.
Redrawing the circle to put myself off of the page.
And this question of the hand—
The mind, too, which cannot be denied.
Who made the decision in the first place to re-frame, re-orient.
It was a tool we used to learn the distance inside the angle.
A word that spoke of emergency.
Of breaking, of bending too far.