Maddie Ticknor

Doomed for Your Approval

I’ve had plenty of dreams about losing my shoes at the party

I watch my friends leave without me

Do you remember the first romance you ever noticed

Do you remember finding orchids pressed into your book

Don’t ever pull the emergency cord it’s actually an unblossomed wisteria

It’s a good idea to make a list of every worry you have in a day

Everyone has a cause for concern

My hair tie is tight and my hand might fall off

There might not be enough hot water for me

I don’t even know what kind of doubter I am

My history is refracted

My friend Grace is worried that Brooklyn will go on forever

The car horn is my alarm clock, I have to go

Does your problem always have to be my problem

My calendar of grief is wide open

I am comfortable or I can at least exhale on the generally banal fringes

A corpse is always honest, cold as stone


Online Dating

Would you love me if I was a beautiful respectful sugar daddy

feel free to ask more and yes I’m serious

would you love me if I was a weird cutie with a fat ass

If I was a country gal living in the city

If I was aggressively late and lowkey trying to find a summer job

If I was not here for a long time just for a good time

If I was not New York LA MIAMI

If I offered to carry the groceries

If I was a spontaneous free spirit with old school values

If I told you I was only looking for someone to be the horse’s rear end in my Halloween costume

I’m looking for someone to bring home to Hawaii

Looking for someone with air conditioning

Looking for a Manhattan based litigation attorney

Would you love me if I was only one mile away

If I was 6 miles away

I’m not here to make friends I’m here to win


Dear Computer

Here I am so selfish,
sucking on my teeth, staring at my screen.
I wish you could kill me; I wish you could spit on me
and drain me of my blood.
All the infallible charm, astonishing beauty,
the infinite knowledge of many languages
can’t hide forever the cold and profound loneliness
I feel with you.
I look in the mirror at my skin and my hair
and my skeleton so awake, feel my secret places
lost in the miles of digital asphalt and concrete,
nice and smooth for us to drive on.
Take the progress and smash it with a hammer! Throw it in the trash!
I’ll check in occasionally to tell my friends how I’m spending my money.


Draw a Window for Me

Ask me to bring the rhubarb
Let me write in your journal
Tell me you’ll call me back
Steal my shorts and never give them back
Snore in my ear while I’m trying to sleep
Let me lie here and tell me the truth
I’ll light your cigarette through the phone
Let me be an animal and you be one too


American Loneliness

What’s more of a nature poem – a river of trash in the subway tracks or a fox grazing on late night road kill
Turn the clock forward to trick me into waking up for breakfast or make a mud house with a rusty fork
Flowers look pretty even when they die or how often I think of my life as something growing inside of me
Do you want to talk on the phone in an hour or do you want to lie on my floor and hum

What’s more of a nature poem – rats loafing on the trash-night sidewalk
or a snake hanging from wood slats in the ceiling
Have a nice day and avoid confrontation or come and watch the planes take off with me
Its against the rules and very dangerous to be entertained by gum
and also to write landscape poetry without cigarette filters and car alarms
Get bangs and look like my mommy or keep the change inside my canvas bag hanging in the closet
Is this a nature poem: I call you cheap because you let me buy the groceries

What’s more of a nature poem – falling asleep on the porch or waking up to the credits
The nearest mall is 45 minutes away or I know we haven’t talked lately but I wanted to wish you happy birthday
What about this one: reading the bible or drooling on the cover
Do you wash your feet at the end of the day because they’re dirty or because you love me
On Memorial Day we tried to visit Pops’ grave but we couldn’t find a parking space
I’m coming back in June


Maddie Ticknor is from central New York and currently lives in Brooklyn. Her poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Susie Magazine, Three Gummy Worms, Lewis & Clark Literary Review, and Post Mortem. She works at a literary agency and more of her poetry can be found on instagram @runnyprose.

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