KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 9: Spring 2018
Prose Poem: 130 words

nor birds nor lightning

by Amy Newday

to celebrate spring equinox, i drive to the dunes, hike out to see how lake michigan is doing and to throw my wedding ring in. a few people in the parking lot, but on the trail it’s just me and the dog. without the nameplates of their leaves, i don’t recognize most of the trees: pecker holes, broken limbs—the bent ones shuffle in the wind. i climb a low beech, press my face against its elephant skin—

something this tree knows
i do not know
and it is not about sunlight
nor the shaking of air, not about holding sand

in the shape of a hillside, nor birds
nor lightning
nor the jackknives of children

the heart of this tree
is a mystery—too easy to say
that’s the part that burns


Amy Newday
Issue 9, Spring 2018

is a poet, farmer, and Director of the Kalamazoo College Writing Center. She holds an MFA in poetry from Western Michigan University, and her poems have appeared in journals such as Poetry East, Rhino, Notre Dame Review, Calyx, and Flyway: Journal of Writing and Environment.

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