The Nudge of the Refugee



Taught to remain dead from the womb,

she walks among tombs, whitewashed

crypts concealing skeletal remains

of 1,000 generations, closets clammy


and fungal. She bites the apple

of her ancestors which, ever since

Newton wed Granny Smith, dictates

a hard fall. The System says, ‘Stay! Be


at home with Depravity, shake hands

with Despair! Dry bones can but rattle,

dead men can but dance.’ But she feels the

nudge of the Refugee, the rebellion of


soiled skin; when she opens her eyes

to Truth, she finds her mantle is but a

rented chrysalis. When they take the final

tally, her casket will be an empty husk,


with hinges rusted like dry blood, an

apple seed rooted through its temple.

Laughing at Gravity, she will rise

on the wings of the dawn, emancipated.





Spring, chrysalis-wrapped

Skeins of sepia-stained silk


Autumn’s Shout

Poised on cliff as summer crumbles,

Soaking sun as autumn grumbles

Burst from last of straggling bees,

Radiate from yellowed leaves.

Whisper now, on cusp of change,

Surrender expectation’s range

As glory from cocoon comes out,

Summer fades with Autumn’s shout.