I felt you in my skin long after you left.
Under the dermis,
hair follicles growing out of me —
Thick and stuck just before reaching the surface.
I tried to itch you out of me.
Scratch you raw.
Pull you out with pincers.
The skin is the largest organ in the body.
You grew all over mine like a weed, a rash of
I prayed you would bloom from within me in
soft petals and leaves
that I could cultivate come Spring.
Ivana Gatica is a Mexican-born, Chicago-based writer and a recent graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work has earned an honorable mention on Glimmer Train and has been published in the print and online issues of Fifth Wednesday Journal.