TO BETRAY WHAT'S SETTLED

by mackenzie kozak

 

 

 

if he burns a bridge he continues

to sleep beneath it

 

wears brown, collapses his shoes

i find him there and he shrugs off

   all mention of this, charred-tongue

they ask me: what is he what is he not

   getting at home

when he broke that warm rind it also burned

but nothing came of it

they ask me: what is he not

   he was not the beginning of my club foot

but there were times where he made it

     difficult to walk

i would like already to be at the part looking back

  saying for better and worse it

   is all there

the ash on the ground is tender

   and opposite           mineral

i store my bitterness in image

 

   i collect his things and they are

   powdered snow

they ask: what is he

he drowses     walks on air

Mackenzie Kozak is a poet living in Asheville, NC. A 2018 finalist of the National Poetry Series, her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Boston Review, DIAGRAM, Denver Quarterly, jubilat, Poetry Northwest, Sixth Finch, Thrush Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Find her online at mackenziekozak.com 

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