a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
washed and shined and ready for soaring
in the wind from San Francisco Bay,
near where we sunbathed and the armed forces
expedition landed suddenly—practice maneuvers.
I would pack practice maneuvers for negotiating
the forest of pens, the broken stubs of pencils
behind the ears of elderly men who won’t calm;
won’t sit or rise but remain pressing their thumbs
in their ears keeping out the wandering words
of refugees. From the academy I would pack
the stones that were in her pockets when she drowned,
weighted down under the Christmas tree branches
baubled with angel dust. I would pack a bit of ice
in a baggy zip-locked for tear gas. For the tears
of the child who didn’t make it. I would pack the words
to ask why we don’t want to save each other.
I would pack the hawk’s feather.
Skaidrite Stelzer is a citizen of the world whose poetry has appeared in Glass, Struggle, The Baltimore Review, Storm Cellar, and many other journals. Her chapbook, “Digging a Moose from the Snow,” is recently published by Finishing Line Press. She enjoys watching cloud shapes.