To Coddle, To Bloom, To Survive

Author | Christopher Stolle

This inky plow cuts into virgin earth
weaving nonfungible patterns

but sow those seeds and irrigate
allowing chemistry to connect hybrids

incongruent molecules ready to burst
to propagate select philosophies

those speaking about harvesting
about eating only what you can hold.

Summer rain pounds vigorous crops
floods hopes for fruitful lexicons

vernaculars and accents infusing stories
colloquialisms uncovering homemade masks

contours to betray every origin
serifs being chopped and turned immobile

tourists gaping at such honest tactics
blood still staining innocent hands.

Wounds cut deep but love cutting deeper
plucking fragments and weeds

tender skin not afraid to exhibit its scars
no sidekicks needed for this shadow sideshow

windows into souls and into skyscrapers
fallow land swallowed by progress

witness changes termed holding fast to tradition
someone reminds everyone that words can’t die.

Just turn over every acre to find new ones.


About the Author | Christopher Stolle poetry has appeared most recently or is forthcoming in the Tipton Poetry JournalFlying IslandBranchesIndiana Voice JournalBlack ElephantThe Poetry CircusSmeuseThe Gambler1932 QuarterlyBrickplightMedusa’s Laugh Press, and Sheepshead Review. He works as an acquisitions and development editor for Penguin Random House, and he lives in Richmond, Indiana.