Toast to the Aftermath

Our angels have traded their binoculars for krugerrands.

They send their regrets along with brochures from islands where the dollar

still buys luck.

Our keepsakes packed in knapsacks, we recite conspiracy theories by heart,

migrating under the cover of trees.

Collect warnings like family recipes and hide them in the grass.

Dilute panic with apathy. Shake. Then serve the mix on ice.

Before global mayhem, a morass of days must be endured.

Work: winding the time around your hands like an endless yarn.

Try to stay alert.

The last ships departing will look like toys through the haze.

These signs will prepare you for cataclysms

for which you cannot prepare.

Another round, please, for the uncertainties that now nag no more

than a foaming fizz stings the tongue.



Years ago

they cut down

the dead oak

I had watched from my window

to build a house

over there.


So full of crows then,

their dark complacency

from rotting branches,

their blue-black

staring, endless, at me,


the oak’s branch tips

extending upward like fingers

of a child reaching

for comfort or answers,

the oily crows

waiting for something

from me.



and still they watch

from a void over there,

dead oak gone,

a blank sky with its ghostly

imprint smeared

blue and gray,

a child reaching her hand upward

waiting for permission to tell

her awful secret.

Georgia Kreiger lives in Western Maryland, where she teaches literature and creative writing. Her poems have appeared in Earth’s Daughters The 2River View, poemmemoirstory, The Orange Room Review, Literal Latté, Poet Lore, Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, Outerbridge, Backbone Mountain Review and others.

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