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Ken Craft


Ken Craft’s poems have appeared in The Writer’s Almanac, Verse Daily, Plainsong, Spillway, Slant, and numerous other journals and e-zines. He is the author of two collections of poetry, Lost Sherpa of Happiness (Kelsay Books, 2017) and The Indifferent World (Future Cycle Press, 2016).

Meditation Lesson

I can hear
in the beaver-flooded wood
the churn of water
under a frog’s legs
the red fox kit’s
high-pitched bark
two Great Horned Owls
hooing conjugal loneliness
the wind lifting
boughs of hemlock
ant legs crackling
over grass blades
the front doorknob twisting
the wood door cracking
thought’s weight
pressing monkey branches
into its once well-
burnished broadside.

Breathe in… hold…
breathe out.

Breathe in… hold…
breathe out.

Rosa Raises Red Flags

I’m depressed, all right, she admits.
Always talking like I want to die

but acting like I’m worried about dying.
Convinced this fist-sized ache

is stage II stomach cancer,
sure my sharp back pains

point to an inflamed pancreas, worried
these migraines might be an astrocytoma

digging starry roots into
the fertile loam of my brain.

With logic like this in a world as
absurd as mine, you’d be depressed, too.

And when Rosa finally stops to smile, adding,
Isn’t life sweet? Worshiping the god of irony?

I nod and allow it’s so, fighting the salt-burn
of tears, watching her smile die its slow death.


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