Tag Archives: Light poetry

when the otters vanish, everything else begins to crumble

By Ashley Cline

“i read that online once—how it’s less about how everything dies, eventually, & more about how living is made more beautiful, simply. the trick is: company, you always need company.”
[after a letter, never sent]

i am twenty-nine, today, & my mother can be heard, in
just the other room, saying, beneath her breath, as often

as ever: such is life. & oh, how holy this old family phrase—
borrowed & practiced from the cupped hands of a woman i’ve

never met (& will only meet much later, it seems, depending
on which god you ask)—but oh, how she translates, no matter

the mouth, to mean, roughly: prayer—or, how wild these things
we cannot control! or, how sharp these teeth that smile back (but

not unkindly); or, you might as well laugh, my love, laugh because
you cannot stop such fickle things from happening; & laugh we

often do (because what choice have we, really?); because such is
life. because such is seasons. because you should see the marigolds,

& what tall things this soil can still grow.


Ashley Cline crash landed in south Jersey some time ago and still calls that strange land home. Most often found listening to Carly Rae Jepsen, her essays on music and feelings have been published by Sound Bites Media, while her poetry has appeared in 404 Ink, perhappened mag, and Okay Donkey Magazine. She graduated from Rowan University in 2013 with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, and her best at all-you-can-eat sushi is 5 rolls in 11 minutes. Her first chapbook, “& watch how easily the jaw sings of god” is forthcoming from Glass Poetry Press. Find Ashley Cline of Twitter and on Instagram.

Fishing Story

By Jaimee Boake


my memories of you tangle
like fishing wire
that grey sunday you took me along in the boat, motor sputtering
to the middle of the dark lake
i learned that bonding meant beer cans in the rusting bottom of the old
Crestliner
you called it your church
with stale trail mix and stony silence to deter hunger
while i, ever conscience of tummy ache turned rumble,
tried not to breathe too loud,
your warning about the wrath of god, should i scare slippery fish,
ringing in my ears

when you finally let out a jubilant holler
(the happiest i may have ever heard you)
it startled me so badly i dropped the rod i carried,
watched water swallow it whole,
understood it’s sinking

as the jackfish flopped in sticky spilled bud light
its hollow eyes watched me on the way back to shore
and i decided miracles didn’t exist


Jaimee Boake is an Edmonton-based English Language Arts, Leadership, and Creative Writing teacher. When not working she loves playing sports and board games, hanging out with her dogs, spending time with family, and drinking lots of coffee. She is happiest, always, in the mountains. She has poetry published in multiple anthologies and magazines. Read more on Instagram.