were all lies, all stories that the evening news anchored
in the sky. The moon perched against their predictions, a fat
white finch. That was the year I spent myself, falling into and out
of time and of love. We stood in our usual lawn under its usual light.
A friend handed me an axe. And blessed be the friend
who knows me well enough to know my anger
builds itself inside my self, a castle fortressed
with a thousand verbs, all bricked synonyms
for silence. Blessed be the tree, grayed in the gray light
that lit us, as if it had built itself for this. A friend said,
throw. I threw. I stood with all that I couldn’t
see: the song the axe sang as it traveled, and the note
it left inside the tree, and above the stars – which were dead,
which were living – and the great gray bullet of a moon
shooting itself, as large as any ending, as any thought I ever
had about what is and what isn’t, in all that time and space.
Emma Bolden is the author of four chapbooks of poetry: How to Recognize a Lady, published as part of Edge by Edge, the third in Toadlily Press’ Quartet Series; The Mariner’s Wife, published by Finishing Line Press; The Sad Epistles, published by Dancing Girl Press; and This Is Our Hollywood, published in volume two of The Chapbook. Her work has been featured on Poetry Daily and Verse Daily’s Web Weekly feature, and her poetry has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Conduit, the Indiana Review, the Greensboro Review, Redivider, Verse, Feminist Studies, The Journal, Guernica, and in Copper Nickel.