Dawn breaks over the lake,

pink-capped clouds hanging heavy.


One last dragonfly glides the glossy surface,

ripples lingering behind.


Crickets and peepers wrap the air with static.

Summer closes quickly in the mountains,


shadows quilting the woods, houses.

I think of the photos you send — the squalid camp,


sand thick and yellow crusting your clothes,

your face….I want to stroke the smile


back into your eyes. Time ticks, licks the ribbon

on my tree, my breast, waiting for you.




KB Ballentine’s work has appeared in numerous journals and publications, including Alehouse, Tidal Basin Review, and Haight Ashbury Literary Journal. A finalist for the 2014 Ron Rash Poetry Award, she was also a 2006 finalist for the Joy Harjo Poetry Award and was awarded the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Prize in 2006 and 2007. Fragments of Light (2009) and Gathering Stones (2008) were published by Celtic Cat Publishing. Her third collection, What Comes of Waiting, won the 2013 Blue Light Press Book Award. www.kbballentine.com.