Rose Kelleher



I'm from the tribe that traveled

upriver, hungering mossward

into cloud country.


Past bird tangle and sundust hours,

past the peaks that guard the end of Here

my brothers trooped, the old old family

sawgrass-eaten many bones ago.


We were the color of cave-shade,

dark as shuteye. We became night nothing

when panthers passed, catmouth breathing,

under the cave of treetop-watching eyes.

We were shorthairs too, like you,

in the gone away day.


Cold kills everything not shaggy there,

even the hollow dogs grow thick as yaks

in shiver time, when rain falls white and weightless

as lice, and hills turn silverback.

Now we're like our land,

icicle-furred, moon waders,

but still your kind.

Rose Kelleher's poems have appeared in Anon, The Shit Creek Review, Snakeskin, and other venues. Her first book, Bundle o' Tinder, was published by Waywiser Press in 2008.



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