Is it eagle is it
fish we wish stumped as logs fair
dog fowl from pieces/hunks bear
or pig in fifteen minutes eye from knot claw
from ring whiff of smoke and pine to yellow brr/grr
shaved/whittled something swift something chipped/
chiseled in his image holy his
Author's Commentary: The event was magical. It was late August at the county fair, and drawn by the growl of a chainsaw, I found myself outside the netting with a small group of spectators, as a man in orange, chin-strapped visor/earmuffs, bored and whittled back a tree stump. “Oh’s” and “Ah’s” punctuated my surprise, my absolute delight, guessing what shape—the likeness of a dog, a bear—the wood night take. As the form emerged, it was as if something wondrous had been born.
Kathleen Hellen is the author of the award-winning collection Umberto’s Night and two chapbooks, The Girl Who Loved Mothra and Pentimento. Her poems have appeared in Barrow Street, The Massachusetts Review, North American Review, Poetry East, and elsewhere. Hellen is a recipient of the James Still poetry prize, the Thomas Merton prize, and prizes from the H.O.W. Journal and Washington Square Review. Her poems have been nominated for the Pushcart and Best of the Net and featured on Poetry Daily.