Suzanne Highland

When I Was a Wind Chime

After Hannah Gamble 

There were shells stuck to my feet  
each time I went inside. If it wasn’t January 
I was kicking my sheets off. Crying, 
I gave my boyfriend a blowjob.  
You can stop if you want 
he said, but I didn’t.  
In the margins of a bio textbook 
someone scribbled unsuitable  
jokes. Three women walk into a bar, began  
my father’s friend, and I said 
But I’m not a woman, and handed him  
a Budweiser. 

Suzanne Highland is a queer, Southern poet, essayist, educator, and wildlife rehabilitator. Her work has been nominated for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize, and it appears or is forthcoming in Works & Days, Apogee, Nat. Brut, A Velvet Giant, Yalobusha Review, and in the anthology Home is Where You Queer Your Heart from Foglifter Press, among others. Suzanne is also the voice behind Mortal Lives, an essay series on Substack about ecology, money, death and birds. She has received support from Art Farm, Sundress Academy for the Arts, Vermont Studio Center, the 92nd St Y, Brooklyn Poets, Florida State University, and Hunter College, where she received the Miriam Weinberg Richter Award in 2016 upon graduating with her MFA in poetry. Suzanne lives in Brooklyn and at