Gabriella Klein

We Used to Have Storms

We used to have lightning that blinded the eye

We used to have dragons

The train urges through graffiti dream fields

I want to come of age she says and fly

Through the stars the rail yards the sandpiles

No more punishment no more reward

We used to have cyclones that upturned mountains

I watched a blaze race itself up the hillside stopping traffic

Nor will I lead nor will I follow

To observe without judgment is a high form intelligence

We used to have fires that burned for years.



Worried notes,

a jarred chord progression,

January warmer

than expected.

I unbutton my coat.

Understanding the origin

understands the end,

immaculate like a proton.

I was listening

for a way out of sadness.

Jagged foothills,

of what

are you the center?


The World in Hand

Let my prayers be, if not answered,

then at least not questioned.

Voice of god in the canyon,

hint of fire in the air.

Be brave for the masses,

wish beyond limit

for the violence to end.

Of what use is my good heart,

if we can’t agree about this,

then what, what then?


Gabriella Klein is a poet, editor, grant writer, fiduciary, wife and mother. Her collection of poems, Land Sparing (Nightboat Books) won the Nightboat Poetry Prize and was a finalist for the California Book Award. Gabriella did her undergraduate studies at Wesleyan University and received her MFA in Poetry from Vermont College.