Poetry: "Open Mouths" & "Rabbit Holes Are Not Homes" by Xylophone Mykland






R A B B I T H O L E S A R E N O T H O M E S



we tip back peach vodka mixed with gatorade.


alice in wonderland flickers on the television,

and bridger teaches me to hold my breath when I take shots

to make them easier to swallow.


we talk about the rabbit hole

and you,

who has one for a mouth.


bridger was there when we split the court apart with our yelling,

couldn’t decide who to follow afterwards.

tells me

you wonder out loud if you spat me out too harsh;

if trial should have come before sentence.


you talk about painting fifteen roses.

I say it’s always been foolish to poison the flowers.

you probably shouldn’t waste the paint.


we are not natural,

and neither are our roses.


alice drinks from a vial, shrinks into a tiny, tiny girl.

I feel so small,

hold my breath, and


swallow.






Xylophone Mykland is a nonbinary lesbian poet and self-proclaimed special occasion, currently based in Portland, OR. Their poetry opens conversation about having mental health disability, abuse, neglect, and all the growth that comes from those experiences, with an emphasis on the journey of accepting oneself. They have been described as relatable and passionate. When they’re not working on poetry, you can find them Googling “androgynous outfits,” walking dogs, applying for public assistance, and thinking about poetry. Find them at @xylophonepoetry on Instagram & Twitter.