Closed for the Season

My Anger wants to ride the Ferris wheel before she leaves, to look into the fish scale clouds. She blames me for this cold rain. Also the shadowy woods, the streetlamps that flicker but won’t give light, and the broken cinderblocks we keep tripping over. Ghost brambles shimmer like fog, while the forest releases the clean cedar smell of its misery. My Anger claims she doesn’t want to be difficult: eventually, she’ll get on the train. But someone must watch her go. Someone must pack her a little bundle of lunch, then watch her take her seat and wave through the dirty window. She won’t miss the fallen leaves that glint like campfires. Or the thorny creepers that draw blood on her ankles. But she has already booked her ticket home to me.

Kathleen McGookey’s work has appeared in journals including Crazyhorse, Denver Quarterly, Epoch, Field, Indiana Review, Ploughshares, The Prose Poem: An International Journal, Prairie Schooner, Quarterly West, Rhino, Seneca Review, and West Branch. Her book Stay is just out from Press 53. Her book At the Zoo is forthcoming from White Pine Press in spring 2017. She has also published two chapbooks as well as a book of translations of French poet Georges Godeau’s prose poems.