Erin Rogers



         “My first experience with Voodoo,” you tell me.

Cotton poly blend. The travel-size sewing kit needle with a narrow eye. There is no


Restorative—I tell you she’ll be good (as new)—once she knows who to thank.

I like the way she looks on top of the piano, a blank silhouette-shape next to the tea-lights

and low-calorie snack wrappers. I sometimes leave my desk on purpose, walk away and

leave her limp, cast-off, cast in usual. Needs mending.

An easy syllogism. Take one, take two. She ran with me to the edge of the water and I

spit it out again. The wet spot of sand was only dark for a moment. She pressed an ear to

my stomach and listened for the giardia intestinalis and the cryptosporidium. I asked her

what it meant for me. She pursed her lips and told me they mustn’t be swimming very

loudly today. Try again tomorrow.

I hear the dead wish they could decide what we dropped in the ground: blood or wine or

potato chip fragments, a left-shoulder toss of salt. Catch you in the eye. Better to leave

behind for them than for gods or the devil.

Cut even slices with a ball of yarn. Sprinkle sugar. Make your best offer.

Sometimes the un-doll slips up. She invites me over to get drunk/text old

boyfriends/watch porn/become reacquainted with God. She doesn’t know how to tell me

not to be standing in this place in the moment I hadn’t anticipated doing so.

Place it in her meridian. A butterfly would be better, keep track of her muscular

hypertonicity. If there are drops, let the dirt eat them whole and maybe the dead will

forgive you (if they’re watching carefully, if their tongues are spread long, waiting).

Mirrors are best when no one moves. If nothing alters you deny the periphery. It is too

easy to lie on a table and catch the reflection of his tray of tools. She told me she had a

strange pain, I asked if I could have one: too.

Keep the doll on the mantle, stick the needle in consecrated ground. Raise at a later


You say I am looking for sacr facere. Under “s” under “f.” Under my bed, in the

stuffing, in the old book of recipes my mother left me.

Great-grandmother’s secret remedy. No one makes it right anymore

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About the Work

Erin Rogers

Erin Rogers likes her text on the page and screen, sometimes simultaneously. She recently performed her piece “Black Lagoon” at the 2011 &Now conference in San Diego as part of their Innovation in a Box series. Her video-text pieces were last seen in the Winter 2011 issue of Quarterly West. She holds an MFA from the University of Utah, where she currently teaches alongside volunteering for [email protected] in Salt Lake City.

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