Kathy Kremins

A Crossing

       – for Jean Valentine

Your halo looks like ripples in holy water,
fingers dipped with words, potent
lines reflect cold thirteenth full moon
deep in desperate December, throws
shadows on snow in a cathedral of silver fir
and cries of wild turkeys reverberate off
the stillness and stanzas of Canis Major
as Sirius pulses iridescent light earthward
tracing the path of your crossing, shimmering,
accompanied by a ragged chorus on ascension day,
choir of angels, creatures great and small, goddesses,
mad poets, mere mortals, pagans, and witches
singing loudly over tender gifts scattered in a field of poems.
Pass them on.

Mourning Flowers

                                -For JMR (1971-2020)


Marie wrote about what the living do    i answer by holding my place in books that might save me   poems of the geographies of lives i’ve lived    buried in the geology of my body    like that bookmark Simon cherished    like callas when he was dying    the one he got at Giovanni’s Room before any of us knew about    the fever & dying so many would do


now today    word you died    cara    always almost loving me    holding fast    laughing hard    a notion of what letting go might yield    the volta in our poem    all style and rhythm defying form    once familiar land

this death falls hard in basalt of ink on skin    the Triple Morrigan that we shared    eruption from the volcano you were    smoldering for years from deadly yearning


yellow ray flowers
corolla and ovaries
dark center of disks
phyllaries a tender hand
fields of eternal lightness


at the end    i would read The Book of Tea like you tended your garden    (squash    corn    beans)    in the middle of night    headlamp on    to stop the torrent of nightmare    i read pages i tagged    years before    Okakura reminding us    a butterfly is a flower with wings

Kathy Kremins (she/her) is a Newark, New Jersey native and a retired public school teacher. Her book of poetry, Undressing the World, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press in June 2022. Kathy’s work appears in The Night Heron Barks, The Stillwater Review, Lavender Review, Divine Feminist Anthology, and other publications.

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Fall 2021