In (response to/preparation for) the recent shooting(s) | by Zackary Lavoie

If He is upstairs His footsteps are quiet. Like a flank of lamb
On a hot stone, I am searing. The hair on the back of my neck

Stands and is singed by direct impingement and heat seethes down
My Picatinny vertebrae. As I lay upon scorched earth, the nerves, originating

From the base of my hips, become threaded and harden. Here, looking up
From the base of this tree, the highest branches form an iron crosshair

Pushed hard against the sky’s temple. I wonder if you take the pressure
Created by all the hands pressed together in prayer and put it against

A trigger if it would fire. I wonder if the sound of it going off would echo
Against the nave of the church or of the person. I’m starting

To think.

The air here has started to pull me the way an oar pulls
The water around it in vortexual thrusts.


Awareness and disgust have become the same and I am sick.
We are sick.



Zackary Lavoie graduated from the University of Maine at Farmington and currently sits as the Director’s Chair Fellow at Alice James Books. He has poems forthcoming in Empty Mirror Magazine and Dirty Paws Poetry Review. His chapbook “UPHEAVALS” is forthcoming. He can be found on Twitter and Instagram @zclavoie