Original Poetry

Stephen and Me

We did not care about convention or time. We would spend hours on the cool floor of the coop, chickens long gone, watching the light filter the dust.

And then Stephen stopped coming to school. Although he lived just across Collier Street, I did not know what had happened until he returned in the fall, 

a beanie covering his head and the laughter gone from his eyes. I was never to recapture those carefree days. At ten, I learned the true nature of things, that nothing remains the same. 

Emily Florence



Single One Way Trip—North Ferry Co.—Amount $4.50

The ticket was in my poetry book. It could have been from a trip to Cape Cod. Or maybe that trip to Shelter Island where I wanted to stay with you forever, isolated by the sea and the storm-beaten pines.

My love was enough but you were ill at ease and I did not interpret what your tension meant. I could not see what would come. 

The ticket was yellowed and creased. Time had faded the words and worn the edges. The North Ferry—now so unfamiliar a name.  

Emily Florence 


Like Children

My hands and cheeks stung from the March wind and the yellow light beckoned

through the skeleton oaks, yet I could not bring her in and end my child’s game. 

The wild bobbing and swooning of my crimson kite to currents I could not know

made me understand that my creation, once in flight, was no longer mine. 

Emily Florence 


Atom Bombs


The red hills of Salina were reflected in her hair. Nearby, under government’s eye, a cold ugliness grew. 

It was covertly released into the air and entered the bodies of all who lived there. 

When forty years had passed, her black hair now white, she was awarded a sum to compensate for her life.

Emily Florence