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Her Thoughts as She Looked Back

by Brooke Dwojak Lehmann

When she looked back on the fire,

all the loss, animal and human

lives she would never see again:  

fawn and field mice, bluebirds

and barred owls. Her closest friend. 

She knew angels could not reverse 

what avarice had already erased,

ignoring a century of urgent advice. 

Stillness overcame, as an eagle seizes 

a hawk before it eclipses the sun, 

spared unlike Icarus about to blaze

the burning arc of failure, a fugue 

played the darkness in her mind,

a fermata before the salt took over.

Brooke is an emerging writer whose work focuses on recovery, disability, and gender themes. Her poetry has been published by Tipton Journal, Parentheses Journal, Black Fox Literary Magazine, 805 Lit, Streetlight Magazine and others. She holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University but believes poetry has the power to transform individuals and communities. Currently, she resides in the Pacific Northwest but identifies strongly with Charlotte, NC for 10 years as that’s where she resided for 10 years.

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