Kicking At The Ground

                                    (after Laura Veirs)


Sometimes I remember that we share the same cells,
that even cast to the wind we could find each other
with a swab from our cheeks. If I were near the Atlantic,
I’d give it all my secrets to whisper to you. But I’m not.
I think of you, my breath heavy into a blushing dawn
to find a spell I might cast like a net. Awake becomes
the loneliest feeling. What sort of tree casts a shadow
into your mornings? The winter is different here but
even a green chill seeps into my joints. I tell you about
a genetic abnormality in me, wait for the silence.
I keep moving, nearly trip over a chunk of rose quartz
in the apartment parking lot. It seems auspicious.
And when the constellations fade I wish I could fill
a garden with magnolia and morning dew as if we could
sip some small pleasure in a place that we’ve burned
to carbon. Find a tulip tree for me, tell me if it speaks.
I think this is how we protect ourselves, and it pulls
the night open like an old coin purse. If you are sleeping,
I hope it is restful. And I will cast a net for you, into
the dark sky, pull it in, shield my eyes from the stars.

Self Portrait Erin Heitzelburg   Stirring, vol. 2 (8), 2000

Self Portrait
Erin Heitzelburg
Stirring, vol. 2 (8), 2000

E. Kristin Anderson is a poet and glitter enthusiast living mostly at a Starbucks somewhere in Austin, Texas.  She is the editor of Come as You Are, an anthology of writing on 90s pop culture (Anomalous Press), and her work has been published worldwide in many magazines. She is the author of nine chapbooks of poetry including Pray, Pray, Pray: Poems I wrote to Prince in the middle of the night (Porkbelly Press), Fire in the Sky (Grey Book Press), 17 seventeen XVII (Grey Book Press), and Behind, All You’ve Got (Semiperfect Press, forthcoming). Kristin is a poetry reader at Cotton Xenomorph and an editorial assistant at Sugared Water. Once upon a time she worked nights at The New Yorker. Find her online at EKristinAnderson.com and on twitter at @ek_anderson.

E. Kristin’s work previously appeared in April 2019.