Who’s to Say?

The surface is frozen

faulted slate. Creaks like an old

woman pulling herself apart over



A boy sits by

the ice cold river and whittles.

Studies the tacks in the night,

dreaming of an island garden

and trees hanging bruised fruit.

Carves his name in thickest trunk. Breaks off

limb for walking stick.


Next morning the boy’s found.

Woolly mittens and sleeves frozen to a drift

hold his head above water.

Blood hangs

from his lip. His tongue is missing.



-spring ‘95

Published by pedalpoet

Poet, writer, and songwriter living in Seattle, WA

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