there was a woman who lived in a house of wax when she came home from teaching children to speak who had never before spoken she would feel the walls of the house the doorknob to check for signs of melting would push the door reach gingerly fingers inside feeling for her own imprint she liked to bring in sounds sometimes flimsy/hard (undone) there were no marks
the children inside the waxen house her own offspring did not speak she never taught them their silence melted down around the arms of the couch sides of the bathtub dripped in pools on the hardwood the children skated none of them knew their names that there were names she kept it that way
one day the house began to buckle they had to go out noise nearly killed them the squirrels (mowersstrimmerstrashtruckssirenswrenscardinalsmockingbirdslaughter) the mailman backs of his knees
Nicola Waldron writes poetry and essays from a small sunroom in South Carolina, which she shares with the occasional anole (manuscripts make good lizard habitat), her yoga paraphernalia, and two charming, creative teens. Nicola’s work is widely published, most recently in Creative Nonfiction and The New York Times. A graduate of Cambridge University and the Bennington Writing Seminars, she currently teaches writing at the University of South Carolina.