Valyntina Grenier

There is always already a war going on


all our dead

all our little deaths


A lead heart exposed

as a chaff of grain packed in flesh


In the wake of two atomic blasts 

an unknown number of hearts were made ash


The almost instantaneous expansion 

violence as air


Mortals projectile

Waves incinerate


Here we are from a page 

hanging in air


Have you heard 

bombs going off


Shells scatter


In a spray of shrapnel

flesh becomes mist 


Bones give off carbon 13


While for you 


for me

our breath becomes mist

for all

for each one



Valyntina Grenier makes art on the side of life that insists, “Don’t Shoot.” Her poetry and visual art push the boundaries of representation and abstraction to create a vantage from which to view violence and prejudice. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in, Lana Turner, JuxtaProse, Cathexis NorthWest Press, Bat City Review, The Volta's Arroyo Chico and Spiral Orb. Her first chapbook Fever Dream/ Take Heart (a double) came out January 2020 from Cathexis NorthWest Press. Find her at or Insta @valyntinagrenier