By Michael Pontacoloni
Feature image: Fire at Full Moon by Paul Klee
Dad has three different chainsaws
and Kevlar shin pads,
the same glossy material
protecting a spacecraft
as it drifts into the Kuiper Belt
where little flecks of undead planet
fling around like buckshot
and light from the sun
takes a while to arrive.
I am glad that my dad is safe
from the Kuiper Belt.
Eventually something else will kill him,
but for now he is cutting firewood
into precise sizes. He is wearing
a wide-brimmed hat.
I am rubbing aloe
into my own growing forehead,
trying not to believe
that he grew up in the only town
hit by a meteorite twice.
One punched a hole in a roof
then rolled under a table
like a peach. The other
lodged in a crossbeam that might well have been
his sleeping smile or
the windshield of his idling El Camino.
He’s asked that I sprinkle him into the woods
when that something else
falls from the sky like a bucket of nails.
Michael Pontacoloni’s poems appear in Cincinnati Review, Copper Nickel, Denver Quarterly, Pleiades, Mississippi Review, and elsewhere. He has received scholarships and support from the Sewanee Writers Conference, Vermont Studio Center, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He lives in Hartford, where he runs a small vintage clothing company.