All Your Fears, My Fear

By Jessica Enriquez

I’m afraid of You


and the man who lingers in the highway

the hands that reach to tear, scrape 

skin and flesh 

with nails like claws 

not buds sprouting from the grass

barely wet in morning rain 


I’m afraid of You


and the worms that climb the bed

their bodies thick and viscid 

their breathing invisible

within their tiny hairs, receptors 

that detect the movement 

of legs dangling, alive 


I’m afraid of You


and the neighbor that spies from the bathroom window

the starving eyes that strip and bare

breasts and thighs

exposed not to natural light 

but to unfamiliar air, 

 humidity seeping in 


I’m afraid of You


and the wide-open doors

carrying in the voices of streets 

plagued by a congestion of indifference 

cold, distant, fluttering birds

the eternal movement

of the homeless  


I’m afraid of You


and the long golden legs

that emerge and extend at will 

wild coriander stems

unveiling little white buds

 to the early burning sun 

I’m afraid of You


and the late september rain 

that infiltrates the nose

and reaches the lungs, accentuating 

blooming like fungi

putrid and malignant 


I’m afraid of You


and your cicadas that dig 

inside innards and intestines 

distending cells, cytoplasm  

a chronic inflammation of the body


Jessica Enriquez is a Mexican-American writer with a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature and a minor in Spanish. Her main focus is creative writing, specializing in short stories and poetry. Her work often focuses on women’s autonomy, Latin-American culture, and familial relationships. She is also a strong advocator for Spanish outreach and engagement of Spanish-speaking parents in the academic setting. She currently serves as a YPA in Foundation Communities Sierra-Ridge’s learning center.


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