I

You are clear
O rose, cut in rock,
hard as the descent of hail.

I could scrape the colour   
from the petals
like spilt dye from a rock.

If I could break you   
I could break a tree.

If I could stir
I could break a tree—
I could break you.


II

O wind, rend open the heat,   
cut apart the heat,   
rend it to tatters.

Fruit cannot drop   
through this thick air—
fruit cannot fall into heat
that presses up and blunts
the points of pears   
and rounds the grapes.

Cut the heat—
plough through it,
turning it on either side   
of your path.
  • Source: Twentieth-Century American Poetry (2004)

Poet Bio

What People are Saying

"I did not expect to fall in love with poetry. I just expected to recite and be done with it. After just sitting there and analyzing my poems, I realized that the stories told through these few words mean so much. I had to step out of myself and step into the author's shoes, and with that comes great work."
Kyla Rose Bates
2016 LA POL Champion