By the Roots

Upon the fallow field
Against the farmer’s reason
An insistent blade of grass
Shooting out of season

“What folly, what stupidity,”
Said the farmer with his hoe
And promptly dug a hole
Where the blade did grow

And through that winter, it remained
A dark stain unwashed by rain
Never covered by a gentle snow
Never graced by the sun’s sweet glow

An empty hole where a blade did grow

And in the spring, that farmer found
And reaped what he had sowed;
A whole field, spot and all,
Insistent, fallow

[Fiction] Baby Talk

Constantine trotted by Sarah’s side like a shadow even when the sun wasn’t out. At first, the new baby brother had been a nuisance, a pest, on the same level as spiders and mosquitos to all fourteen-year-old girls, until he started talking.

Sarah listened as she never listened to anyone else, because when Constantine spoke it was not like other people speaking, but music. Soft rising. Sly falling. His toddler’s babble was possibility: untamed, uninformed, and incomplete.

She pressed her fingers against his cupid’s bow. Wet and slick with saliva, it was hungry for more than a bottle. She wrapped him in her thin arms, the ones her girlfriends taunted as anorexic at school, and found a surprising strength welling deep inside her.

She lifted a lullaby, a wonder, as Constantine sang.