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  • Thea Swanson


Updated: Dec 5, 2022

By Thea Swanson

You should get paid

more the college student said privy

to my sham

on display the adjunct

dilemma mastery for pennies the odor

of home disrepair clinging

to my syllabus

At the pricey private school

the sixth-grader interrupted

my grammar lesson: Is that a cowgirl shirt

you’re wearing, Mrs. Swanson? the snake

of humiliation trails

my path its bite perennial inducing

no immunity

Please take this

middle ground this charade let me serve

you bread let me scrub

your tiles ambiguity

be gone


in English 100

i preached

the evils of meth a man

in the back

called out I KNOW



Thea Swanson is a feminist atheist who holds an MFA in Writing from Pacific University in Oregon. She is the Founding Editor of Club Plum Literary Journal, and her flash-fiction collection, Mars, was published by Ravenna Press in 2017. Her hybrid essay and poem collection, How To Be a Woman, was longlisted for the 2021 Dzanc Nonfiction Prize. Her flash-fiction collection, There and Here, was longlisted in the Tarpaulin Sky Press 2020 Book Awards. She is a fiction finalist in the 2020 Best of the Net Anthology, and her poetry, fiction and essays are published in places such as Mid-American Review, Spillway, Crab Creek Review, World Literature Review and Northwest Review. For more of her work, visit

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