Shadow Duty


Shadow Duty

The sun rises in the East—
Battalions of shadows
begin their duties at dawn.
Cooling, covering, creeping.

At noon, relief arrives
in the form of mirror replicas,
shielding the East.

As the sun begins to sink,
slowly sliding, slipping beneath
the horizon, the shadows grow.
Long, tall, far, and wide
until they’re all that’s left.

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Baggage Claim


Baggage Claim

I’ve got baggage—
under-eye baggage,
vacation baggage,
fucked up childhood baggage.

It’s not even the expensive kind.
A broken zipper,
a frayed seam,
and don’t even get me started
on the duct-taped handles.

Once someone asked
where I was going
with all that baggage.
“Wherever I want,”
I said.

Wildflower


Wildflower

Tiny holes hollowed out of the earth like graves,
and from these graves, life will rise.
Each damp cavity, carefully spaced–
two to four inches.
Soil, sweat, and strict scrutiny coalesce,
filling each earthen womb with precision and purpose.

The habits of the elements are closely observed.
The sun—it rises in the East, peaks at noon.
A heavy swath of shade sets about its duty at dawn,
shielding the west side of the barn until sometime after lunch.

The central garden takes its first drink of sunlight
while the morning moon still watches from the sky
and continues, bathing, until the moon returns
and only the most distant suns can be seen.

Each seedling must have room to grow, expand.
Never crowded, for they will wilt and die.
The should be fed water and sun and shade
until they’ve had their fill but never more.

They are God’s creations—living beings. Maybe
they silently cry for water when the soil is parched
and cracking, or call for bees to come feed from
their centers and spread their seed as they leave.

I do not know this for sure.
All I know is… If I were a flower,
I would be a wildflower, running along the highway
or spreading across a field. I would not follow rules.
Because only wildflowers sprout without worry
and bloom without permission.
Yes. I would be a wildflower.

Help!! Writing Struggles


There’s something I’ve begun to notice during my senior year in college. As an English major, specifically Creative Writing, my focus is on fiction. But…

I never have been, and I’m afraid I never will be a good poet. I was in need of an extra creative writing elective, so I enrolled in Intermediate Poetry Writing. It has been the toughest, most humbling, and frustrating experience I could have imagined.

Here I am, an editor of the University’s annual creative writing publication, and I can’t even write poetry. Luckily I can recognize and appreciate good poetry, but when it comes to creating it, it’s almost as if I’m too literal minded.

Has anyone else had this experience? Conquered it? Still struggle with it? I could use some feedback here. What are some strategies you use to get the juices flowing? How can I get past my overwhelming urge to put prose on paper??

Mirrors and Windows


Mirrors and Windows

When you look at me
with glitter and stars in your eyes,
what is it that you see?
Am I a mere reflection
of all that you are?
Strong, magical, yet insecure?
Or can you see through to me?
Where the insecurities overshadow everything else.
And the light and vibrancy hides away
in cobwebbed corners waiting for
their chance to shine?

How to Feel


In workshop today, the class critiqued my new short story, and the response was mostly positive. I got an A on the story, AND my professor wrote in my critique that the story reminded him of Dean Koontz’s writing. I could barely fit my head through the door of the classroom when it was over. 😀

To read an exerpt of the story, go here

To Be Continued…


To Be Continued. ..

My cover is plain,
never calling for attention.
Quietly beautiful
like a single daisy,
but I am no flower.
Prop me under a table leg.
I can take it.

But be careful of my pages.
They are delicate
like Bible pages
only less holy,
but they are well read
and nothing like new.

So I hide my wear and tear
and rough cut edges
under a simple dust jacket
because good condition
is better than acceptable.