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Tuesday, July 22, 2014


by Austin Alexis

Immigrant children at Ellis Island gather around a toy horse in 1920 (NYC Vintage Images). Source: The Atlantic

A sea
she will paddle upon
or attempt a desperate swim in
while hoping to shoo off sharks.

A mountain 
she will hike through,
braving mudslides,
slicing through brambles.

A desert
she will trek across,
stepping over rattlesnakes
as she swallows fear of starvation

and guides her children
to reach milk and honey
even if the milk is sour,
the honey bitter.

Austin Alexis is the author of the full-length collection Privacy Issues (Lotus Press/Wayne State University Press) and two chapbooks from Poets Wear Prada. His work has appeared in Barrow Street, Paterson Literary Review and elsewhere, and is forthcoming in Poetry Pacific (Canada) and The Five-Two: Crime Poetry Weekly.