To my father

Jessie Doble, from Fairbanks, AK, graduated from Temple in May 2020 with a degree in English and a double minor in sociology and music.

Image of Short Fiction Contest - 2020
Image of Poetry

When I was left at home sometimes, I let the fire go
out for the simple pleasure of watching
you make it again

Birch bark accomplices to the dusty
smell of ashes and burning wood: a promise
that we would never be cold

It's those first days when the temperature drops
and during the night the doors freeze shut
and the lilacs frost over. It gets dark
at 6 o'clock near the end of September while everyone watches
TV with their gin-and-tonics on a Friday night

Suddenly it's the holidays and it's black outside
and the house creaks like a woodpecker drumming
on the window. Time moves slower

The winter solstice comes
and with it two hours of baby powder daylight

I wake in the middle of a January night to a hand
shaking my shoulder saying
come to the porch
come outside
come look at the lights