She soaked the soles of my feet in whiskey all that afternoon
so that when she finally went after him I would be asleep–
drunk as light cast on fresh snow in morning. She bit
into his shoulder and fragrant leaves embedded between
her teeth then spit the seeds all over the house–
onto the cabinets and carpet and in the living room
where she shot-put the ottoman at him, crashing into
the mantle that split in two. I have never seen the house
that I was born in, but they say for every fig tree they dig out
from the foundation, another grows in the exact place,
the smell of false fruit poisoning the air.
Joel Ferdon‘s chapbook, Elegy for My Father’s Bones, was published by Louisiana Literature Press in 2016, and his poems have appeared, or will soon, in Verse Daily, Asheville Poetry Review, The Southern Quarterly, Cold Mountain Review, storySouth, Louisiana Literature, and elsewhere. Joel is the recipient of an Artist Support Grant through the North Carolina Arts Council and the Arts and Science Council of Charlotte, has been a contributor at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He serves as the Director of Library Services at Stanly Community College in Albemarle, North Carolina, and lives with his wife, son, and three black labs in Charlotte, North Carolina.