Week 32: Kristene Kaye Brown


For Hunger

You can give a tumor a cute name, 

            but like a hurricane     it still 

might kill you. A small body inside 

a bigger body, an un-gardening

of limb and trunk.

All day sharks ram 

the ocean to keep from drowning, 

a constant moving panic. No,

not even sorrow knows           her fate. 

I love how the fields foam

                        with wheat. 

I love how earth inhabits 

many appetites.           The baby 

gazelle lapping

from the same stream as the hungry

lion,                 all sun and flame, 

each rib a gone-soft gold 

in the mouth.               All it takes 

is two sharp barbs of a hook 

to pull a small city up from the sea,

all eyes            and flushed gills, 

a pearl-grey brokenness

Fear, like a wave ,

looking for something solid to break 

against. This hunger that is ours, 

for now,                      for less.


Kristene Kaye Brown is a mental health social worker. She earned her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her work has previously been published, or is forthcoming, in DIAGRAM, Columbia Poetry Review, Harpur Palate, Meridian, Nashville Review, and others. Kristene lives and works in Kansas City.