Two Poems


steve k

Illustration by Rebecca Pyle

Our House 

The way to our house takes you past the river
where it bends around Beaver Island, flowing
toward the dam. In June, boys toss
their lines with calm restraint. Their eyes
have become clouds, faces serene as statues
from a land of sun-bleached stone.
They wave as you pass, three hands or four,
and maybe the wind ruffles their hair,
and somewhere strange fish rise toward
the surface with their ancient gills
and their blood. And the road leads down
into a valley of golden trees, where sky changes
color beneath the scarlet sun. You may hear
women singing in the flower-sprinkled grass,
or you may feel the breath of their tongues
as words roll across the yard. There is a word
for anger, and one for spite, and quite another
to describe the hot scent of bread, or the way
to connect two bodies with a little bridge of flesh.




Abandoned North House--Rebecca Pyle--I.jpeg

Illustration by Rebecca Pyle

The House No One Remembers

Here in the north it sits abandoned,

hunched in the wind, a silent place


with a hundred mouths and broken

tongues. Seven hothouse lilies stood


in a clear glass vase, seven cats curled

gray bodies around the hearth, as smoke


braided above the chimney, while cold

sun stared down on juniper and pine.


A sister lived there with seven brothers

who flew into the sky as their black


wings dripped blood onto new fallen

snow. Seven years without laughter


or a single word to disturb the silence

she has come to love, or the rhythm


of her hands weaving brightly colored

tapestries of change. Clean floors, clean


linens, bread and cheese, a table rubbed

with lemon and oil. Water drawn from a


clear well. No boots thumping, no snores

or snapping towels, no coarse hairs


in the sink, just her visions growing like a slow

flame, consuming her day by day without pain.

STEVE KLEPETAR’s work has appeared widely and has received several nominations for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize, including four in 2016. His most recent collections are Family Reunion, A Landscape in Hell, and How Fascism Comes to America.

REBECCA PYLE, now living above a hundred-foot rock garden near the Great Salt Lake in Utah, has artwork that will appear or is forthcoming in Hawai’i Review, New England Review, and the art / lit publication Raven Chronicles, out of Seattle. See a collection of her artwork at  She is also a writer, a member of the writers’ group The King’s English, and recent work by her can be found in The Healing Muse, Stoneboat and (later this year) the Wisconsin Review.