Words From The Front

A mouth in the mountain.

Grey rucksack stuck with sand.

Mother’s letter on light-colored paper folded

end over end

pinned inside my sleeve.


Innocent beard, cared for like soft moss,

grips the wind. Glow ember, harrows

rutted pitched thick in spikes

holding our tent flaps.


A grey bird two days ago making water


Roads appearing under closed eyes off

in a different valley. Skin feels ashed,

turns to coal.


I make a drawing of a castle in the sand.

Imagine walking through each corridor, key to every


I can carry more weight than any man.

My face reflected black in the rock-side of a castle


CHARLES KELL is a PhD student at The University of Rhode Island and editor of The Ocean State Review. His poetry and fiction have appeared or are forthcoming in The New Orleans Review, The Saint Ann’s Review, floor_plan_journal, The Manhattanville Review, and elsewhere. He teaches in Rhode Island and Connecticut.