Poems

“I read the line over and over / as if I might discern / the little fires set / the flames of an idea licking the page”

“Illumination,” Natasha Trethewey

fire teaches best

fire teaches best

—a haibun after supper she sends us out to play in the yard & get our ya-yas out, one last hurrah of dirty bare feet & stinky little girl before bathtime, then storytime, then bedtime. Sissy & I had drippy popsicles & we ran to the farthest edge of the...
“Lessons in Mining” & “Bonfires”

“Lessons in Mining” & “Bonfires”

“Lessons in Mining” “Redneck referred to the red bandanas that West Virginia miners wore around their necks.” –Chuck Keeney, WV Mine Wars Museum. In my Appalachian middle school, the teachers transformed classrooms into a coal mining town. The...
Suspect

Suspect

A TSA agent lifts your nursling from your arms. Flagged, he says. Just a baby, you say.   The white man behind you navy tie, slightly loosened who’d just been cooing at your little one— fiddles with the cuff of his starched shirt steps around you feeds his briefcase...
burn barrel

burn barrel

out country, a modified 55-gallon open head drum is good as a crematoria for burning clean & efficient— make sure to pick a spot downwind, without the secretive boughs & branches of trees draping down. double check for combustibles. remember you are...