Past the Age of Early Rising



It was just personal, all I ever wanted                       

to be was a bona fide amateur, a casual


collector, able to appreciate over time

and without obsession—to experience the hunt


without butcher, free from the bland force

of wholesome goals. Alone and hoarding linen onelets,


a little death and jaw-drop during the night. Ever notice that

force is never bland? Ever ruin a morning reading someone


else’s passion story, some full-throbbed search

for possession, the blinding joy? I have, I assure you,


it is no way to start the day. Such sense

deprivation makes a person lose all reason to get out


of bed. Maturity is really a tiding over, the shudder

of a ship unable to stop. Sooner than later we learn


gratitude is always attractive, and the lavender scent of soap

never regrets a little lace, here and there, around the underedge.



K.T. Billey is an MFA candidate and Teaching Fellow at Columbia University as well as a proud Grils Write Now mentor. Poems and translations have recently appeared in The New Orleans Review, Phantom Limb, Ghost Proposal, Prick of the Spindle, and Palabras Errantes. The poem in this journal was produced in tandem with the visual art of her sister, Layla Billey Thordarson.