I hand you the cutting from the newspaper. You read Roo’s obituary and open the pencil drawer in your oak desk, your repository for picked-up pens from businesses, paper clips and forever stamps, and what remains of your business cards. You mutter a few words about an orchard, but I can’t catch them.
You were never the pocket he climbed into although you grew up cleaning up after him. That he died alone in jail was predictable. You knew the State would handle disposition of his body. You were not listed as surviving family. No one goes out of their way for pedophiliacs.
I open that drawer a week later. No scrap of newsprint. What is new—a cat’s-eye marble, swirl of blue.
hit no one on the head
a wandering doe ate it
is a Vermont poet whose work appears widely in journals, anthologies, and seven collections—with number eight, The Unknown Daughter (part autobiography, part fiction and fantasy, part feminist history), coming out on March 1, 2024. How I Learned to Be White received the 2018 Indid Book Award for Motivational Poetry. One Bent Twig (Future Cycle Press, 2023) contains eco-poetry highlighting trees Knoll has planted or loved, or now worries about due to climate chaos. She is a Contributing Editor to Verse Virtual.
Poet’s website: https://triciaknoll.com/