Dating the Arrival of

by Kelly R. Samuels

The axe has hewn the wood, so, there—there’s that:
some man wielding a tool for what could be
a house or a church or a craft to set sail again.
And down among the many rings, carbon
from what flares, traveling nearly at light speed,
from cosmic, of the cosmos, and ray of radius.
Maybe we arrived then and settled
and then went, they say. And this is all
there is to show for that.
He kept saying we were a blip, or not even
a blip, not the head of a pin, but a mote, an atom/
the uncuttable, a quark—the terms becoming more
specific and confusing to me. From a journal, kept:
We drove across three states, each one
flatter, to land here—where the river works its way
and bluffs rise on either side.

Kelly R. Samuels is the author of the full-length collection All the Time in the World (Kelsay Books, 2021) and two chapbooks: Words Some of Us Rarely Use and Zeena/Zenobia Speaks. She is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee with work appearing in The Massachusetts Review, RHINO, Court Green, The Tusculum Review, and The Pinch. She lives in the Upper Midwest.


Photography by: Michał Turkiewicz