Under \ Over – Rae White

half awake stretch point the toes \ you shift rollicking the bed

edge phantom arm between cracked slats \ play my spine with fractured

knuckles like ice water trickling bone

press my skull onto mattress \ your whisper-teeth tracing pulsing neck

slide leisurely, bed screeches \ mother’s voice plump with

childhood warnings in my head

I dare to dangle my arm over the side

of the bed

cold breath envelops palm \ mouths suckle-lick my fingertips

you rasp-moan through mouthfuls \ I reach below to grasp

the most tangible part of you in the darkness:

your oil-slick seaside foot \ I pull you over onto the bed



Rae White is a non-binary poet, writer and zinester living in Brisbane. Their poetry collection Milk Teeth won the 2017 Arts Queensland Thomas Shapcott Poetry Prize and is published by the University of Queensland Press. Rae’s poem ‘what even r u?’ placed second in the 2017 Overland Judith Wright Poetry Prize. Rae’s poetry has been published in Meanjin QuarterlyCordite Poetry ReviewOverlandRabbit and others.