the riddled roads by Kathryn Sadakierski

last day of junior year,

high school English class,

we wrote memories of each other.

“going places for sure”

one girl said of me.

I wonder where

as I contemplate the road

riddled with pine needles,

whittled to a narrow arrow

by fringes of fall leaves.

autumn bares the core of what is,

like a peeled apple,

there is no husk 

of past reflections

to shy behind like flowers beneath the frost.

every mask is shed,

if there were any worn,

true colors shine

like the infantile fingertip of sun,

an extended branch,

reached out to touch the grass,

dry sheaves of corn the sunset is lost in

as though the pond of light

is a purse in which 

a coin of resilient hope is slipped,

so the future waits.

some birds find their place

in the labyrinth of trees,

and therefore, uncover their song.

a yellow school bus

like a black-striped caterpillar

whose markings foretell the change of seasons,

inches its way up the climbing country hills,

the weaving roads that recede into the trees,

tunnels of sun-laced shapes,

shifting fragments of a dream

unfolding in the mind’s eye

of your afternoon nap

on a picnic blanket of light outside,

immersed in sun,

the leaves rustle and rattle 

above your eyes,

like stars on a mobile

over a child’s crib.

it’s been so long, and yet

the days here, in the silver goblet of now,

are a blur.

I was on that bus 

of yesterday

not so long ago,

feeling like only a minute had passed

between today and then,

but now I’m back home,

unsure of where to find my way

in the crowded intersections

of a world so deafened

by its own chatter,

proclamations, premonitions,

predictions and persuasions,

convictions and conditions.

I can only let this light

live long in my soul,

letting it lead me

wherever I may go.

Kathryn Sadakierski is a 22-year-old writer whose work has been published in anthologies, magazines, and literary journals around the world, including Blue Marble Review, Halfway Down the Stairs, October Hill Magazine, Northern New England Review, seashores: an international journal to share the spirit of haiku, Snapdragon: A Journal of Art and Healing, The Scriblerus, Tomorrow and Tomorrow, Toyon Literary Magazine, Yellow Arrow Journal, and elsewhere. She graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. and M.S. from Bay Path University in Longmeadow, Massachusetts.

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