I dig for an artifact of me in myself–
hot shovel, cold hands. Last year (and the next),

I grieved on an airplane of my own longing,
finally over a peak to be proud of and the

outside would have killed me. Yet the air
inside was stale– passing breaths of confined

bakers, strangers, hagglers. Their quiet chatter,
occasional laughter only filtered through my ears.

I was (and will be) a hole better voids can fill.

(originally published in Agony Opera, Summer 2021)


I know you want to leave, to take a bus
out of Columbus, to fight your battle
in Seattle, or Denver, or wherever
your heart may lead–

to be a nomad is to go
where the landscape dreams,
and to scrunch it all in your hand
like wisps of dandelion in the wind,

and in your palm its feathery white
is dissolution–

however far you go, know those you meet
will occupy the rooms in the tiny hostel
of your heart, sharing wisdom and laughter
despite however many days we spend apart.


(originally published in The City Key, Spring 2016)