Get NiftyLit news & updates delivered directly to your inbox. Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

Skip to main content
Original artwork by Ella Jensen


Nicole Desjardins Gowdy
Our Bodies, Our Rights: Special Issue • Poetry

In 2022, Ophelia does not lament

alone, she doesn’t swallow her grief

like a sleeping pill




she takes back the night

she stands

on the steps of the administration 

with a sign

or a candle

or a megaphone

her sisters streaming behind her like water

from a broken dam

Ophelia has words for her pain

she calls herself


she rises from the ashes of her former self

she can 

cancel her pain

she can

illuminate the pain 

in others


or maybe not


she does none of these things