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Christine Jupp
Portland, OR

Christine Jupp is a PNW-born writer living in Portland, OR. She studied English at PSU and works as a copywriter for a local digital marketing agency. Her favorite places to write are small cafés in foreign countries where nobody knows her name. You can reach her at cjupp122@gmail.com or find her on Instagram.

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Photo by Sydney Fort

Green
Christine Jupp

This wine tastes
like marshmallows
this cigarette
like solitude
and I wonder if I’ll
be known
for my bad spelling
or known at all.
I can feel the server’s
eyes
glance at me.
He knows I’m poor,
in this country
with smooth stone
walkways
and live jazz music normally,
but not tonight.
Tonight it’s

discount prices
to make up for the lack of music.
It’s wishing I was
a mystery
and knowing I’m not.
The green shutters of old town
are closed tonight.
So is this book
I don’t really want
to read
And so is my mouth.
But I remember what you
said about saying nothing
for days
at a time.
I wonder if all the world was
gone,
would I still write?
Or would I speak to myself
and to no one?
Would I still be embarrassed
thinking that sign
represented an American drink
until you corrected me
kindly
“it’s ‘room’ in Croatian also.”
I blush and brush
it off
and stumble in my head.
I know I’ve said too much
about my childhood.
The boy who touched me
the way I touch myself
the girl I was
and I reveal the girl I
still am in many ways.
I wonder if I’ll ever be
a woman
or what I perceive a woman to be.
Do I want to?
Take me now
or in six month’s time

in Greece
or South East Asia
with inevitable
dysentery
of my mouth.
I’ll spend my time
romanticizing
writing
and falling in love
at least a few more times
with new men
with big hearts
and dark hair.
I’ll say goodbye to them
like I do.
I’m learning to fall in love
with me.
Embrace myself.
I’ll turn my lips
from purple
to pink
and back again.
I’ll try not to
twist
too hard and roll
too quickly.
I’ll try not to run
too fast all excited and
flustered
in awe of the bright
thing
that sparkles in front of me.
That’s how I’ll keep myself
safe enough
to see it all.
To avoid being laid up for months
because I moved
unbalanced and eager
is my goal.
Maybe then I’ll feel like
a woman.
Until then I have this
marshmallow wine

and this bad book
that I can’t make myself
read.