Door Girl


You could say Regina was a door 

girl who wasn’t supposed to enter

a house where people fucked, wept,

swung sermons, then collapsed on bony

backs to face a ceiling of sometime stars. 

Or you could say she was a lookout, an only

listener & oh yes, that’s what she did.

One side of her face pressed against

the screen door while Lazee played the 

organ like a church, as though flowers

bloomed around him & sometimes they did.

Purple orchids. White lilies beckoning like fingers. 


Evie was a house girl & she’d sit on the other side

of Regina’s door, singing stories through the organ’s wail, 

for once, she knew everyone: 

Frida, Tina, Leonora Carrington, 

Remedios Varo when she fed the moon,

the punks off Western, the friends who’d kicked

& the friends who hadn’t—who went back home,

or were found too late.

Angeline with her billboard breasts,

businessmen, & pink convertible.


In the afternoons,

when the orchids & lilies shrunk to bulbs

& the flies got tired

of buzzing wings on screen, 

Evie licked her gold tooth

for luck & asked: 

“Regina, are you feeling cold? Because, a girl must

want a roof, even if she sleeps inside the tiniest

Matryoshka—even if she carries a Ziploc bag purse.”

Zoë Rachel Miller

Zoë Rachel Miller grew up in Los Angeles. She earned her BA at the New School University and her MFA at the University of Minnesota. Her work has been published in 12th Street, Front Porch Journal, and fields magazine. She has recently finished a short story collection and is now at work on a novel. Currently, she lives in Austin, Texas.

NOVUS Literary and Arts Journal
Lebanon, TN