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Winner of C&R Press Summer Tidepool Chapbook Contest 



A page by page erasure of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper, Sousa’s Yell subverts and contemporizes the original story of an oppressed housewife, and would-be writer, driven mad. In this version, the heroine speaks of her repression and slow descent into the amnesia of self, before finally awakening to the many women she contains. Though her emancipation is preceded by something which resembles the madness of Gilman’s original, this shadow heroine ultimately claims her haunted, multifarious nature. She chooses liberation, surfacing from the nightmare conscious of her capacity for darkness and light; owning them both and fully awake.




I didn’t realize for a long time

what the thing was,

now I’m sure

it is a woman I was.

I watch it by night:

moonlight, candlelight, lamplight.

There is a woman


behind my quiet.

He started

the habit of making me

lie, subdued. I mean,

I sleep all I can.

But, you see,

I’m convinced I don’t sleep.

I’m getting a little afraid

I’m awake.



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