Maureen Mulhern

Rabbit, Rabbit

The foot slips down
Through the shape-shifter’s spine.

Good luck keychain,
Pocket-sunk amulet,

Hoodoo fighter
At the bottom of a mojo

Or clustered
Bright red, green, yellow, orange

In the clear belly
Of a vending machine.


Bones crack
As skin is pried

And pelts flattened
To be sewn next

To that of a brother’s
Brother’s brother.


Hairless kits
With eyes shut,

Turn in their nest.
Outside the burrow      

Their mother
Stills the grass.

No one hears
As night removes

The colors of things,
As she narrows

In the field
Of the owl’s sight.


In its felt dome

The charmed one
Is pulled out

By the ears,
As limp as a sack of grain.

Maureen Mulhern

Maureen Mulhern has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College, and a MFA from the University of Iowa’s Writers Workshop. She received the Ruth Lake Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America as well as a writing fellowship from Yaddo. Her poems have appeared in Crazyhorse, Denver Quarterly, Indiana Review, Poetry, Prairie Schooner, among others. Parallax, her first book of poetry, was published by Wesleyan University Press Poetry Series. Born in Birmingham, England, Maureen spent her early years in the UK before moving to the US where she is a naturalized citizen. She is an ardent photographer, an inconsistent gardener, and a terrible cook. Her favorite photographic subjects are crows, wild turkeys, cracks in sidewalks and lost gloves. She and her husband, tenor saxophonist, Doug White, have one son, twelve cats, and are the founders of independent jazz record label, Juniper Records.