Kristin Kowalski Ferragut

Celebration of Survival

Sometimes they converge to justify
         every prior moment — Time,
                  temperature. Above frozen

         lake in morning see how it changes
from solid to liquid,
how sun spreads
         itself across slick, kisses
                  your nose through wisps
         of smoke, cigarette dangling
from your lips; how white caps

of last night rest like glass. I brought
         only a small knapsack but now
                  see I overpacked.

         See how my frozen
hand warms in yours, how clothes
         peel off like like days, while Aion* erases
                  years and asks what would you trade
for youth?
Nothing, we agree.

                                                                              Aion – Greek God of cyclical time

Seems We Fall Into Buddhist Surrender

It’s not like it breaks, or splits
         in two, this heart of mine.

                  It peels.
Contrasts how yours burns. We suffer
         despite ourselves. We find

                  our good time, bound
         to weights

of longing, little losses
                  everytime you say

“later.” Maybe if measured, we’re more
rich than broke. Hard to say. I make

         a practice
                  of appreciating things I can have

in lieu of your company — layers of warm
clothes, crunchy cold earth underfoot, shadows
         and the sound of the sea in irrationally

wind. I weather myself, peel after
                  frost. You char, become

         harder to burn —

         ways we make ourselves
happy even if altogether aside from love.


Do not go into the mire as though you might offer coattails to kite
escape to fresh space. It’s too hot for jackets and besides, we set

them aside long ago. We travel only with skin that fails to hold in
heat from combustion hearts. There’s no denying attraction to warmth,

sound, dying to save another. The wail of a witch at the stake resonates
the same as a banshee’s warning; both beguile, but only one might

be saved. Loud-eyed do-gooders rebranded Sympathy as pity, although
she’s the best understanding we had before throwing ourselves

into the fire. All the green tea and dark leafy vegetables
in the world won’t protect us from our own good intentions.

Kristin Kowalski Ferragut writes poetry, songs, short stories and essays. She lives in Maryland where she teaches, plays guitar, sings, rides her bike, and hosts the DiVerse Gaithersburg Poetry Reading and Open Mic. She is author of the full-length poetry collection Escape Velocity (Kelsay Books, 2021) and the children’s book Becoming the Enchantress: A Magical Transgender Tale (Loving Healing Press, 2021). Her poetry has appeared in Beltway Quarterly, Bourgeon, Anti-Heroin Chic, Fledgling Rag, and Little Patuxent Review among others. More, including her blog, Poetry & Other Mystical Space, can be found at