The Destroyed Room

Megan Crayne

inspired by the photograph of the same name by Jeff Wall

This room where I held you now holds only drywall and musk. I drank the rest of that whiskey you were saving to open your casket of drawers. How much is it all worth? All of that mothball silk and brooches and ruse—I run my fingers over the buttons and they rise like petrified wood. Hours pass and I am surrounded by all you left. Piles of the junk. How much is it all worth? There are notes in your handwriting under the chairs and all over the green depression glass. It is tomorrow or a week from now. It is high noon and it is 2am and I lost your voice. It sounds like a high-pitch static behind my eyelids. This room awakens with the stench of your body which is my body now. I dig my nails into the paint, over and over and over until I draw blood. My back is rigid, my lungs are heaving, all the hurricane I have become. I shatter each window until everything is splintered. I take the sharpest heel and pierce shake and rip until I’ve torn every ache of you apart.

I tell everyone the storm took you.

All you are now:

piles and piles and piles.


Megan Crayne is a queer poet and artist based out of the Pacific Northwest. She designs books freelance, writes a weekly poetry newsletter, and makes ebooks at W.W. Norton. Recently, her work has been featured in Headline Poetry & Press and the upcoming COVID-19 Anthology from Train River Press. You can find her ranting about social justice and the literary world on Twitter & elsewhere: @megancrayne |