Recipe for an Indian

Jessica (Tyner) Mehta

How much Indian are you? All of it,
red velvet proofs deep in my folds.
Fry bread thighs undercooked, whipped
merengue cheekbone peaks
and a blackened cut of feather
tattoo marinating over childhood
scars, biopsy stitches and mole seasonings
from a life of willing the sweetness
burning inside to rise, rise, rise.


Jessica Tyner MehtaJessica (Tyner) Mehta, born and raised in Oregon and a member of the Cherokee Nation, is the author of three collections of poetry and one novel. She’s also the founder of MehtaFor: Writing and Editing. ¬†She serves as a poetry reviewer for Contemporary Literary Review India and Foreword Reviews. You can find out more about her publishing history at