The fresh start – Kelsey Lister

Soggy April. Three salt-kissed acres. A house between the rock and the trees. The last part of a glorified escape plan. The day I learned it’s okay to run away. To leave the past six provinces behind. The blue is dark in the front yard, and I’m not allowed to walk past the ferns alone. I have nightmares about my bed spinning. The eye makes landfall and my bag is packed by the door. A rice-filled frog and my favorite book. I survive to count the cranberries. I carry my harvest home in an ice cream pail. Testing my balance on the ledge, I avoid the black rocks. Every salamander deserves a name and a small cemetery forms in my backyard. I race the neighbor boy to his driveway and pretend to like dinosaurs more than ghosts. I believe the sun rays will make me beautiful and paint my hair blonde. When I’m afraid, the fog horn sings. And when the kelp and sharp rocks appear, I know a decision has been made. The tide has gone out and it’s time to leave. I do not understand trading waves for stability, but the West has called back with a promise the Atlantic couldn’t keep. A fresh start still at the beginning—  I kick, and I insist— a little longer here.

Kelsey Lister

Kelsey Lister is an emerging poet residing in Alberta, Canada. She has work appearing or forthcoming in Maudlin House, Anti-Heroin Chic, Roi Fainéant Press & others. You can find her on Twitter @stolencoat

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