2 poems

by Carl Chen

Calabasas High School


She must have been a sight back then:
the trees were golden, shadows ran long
first distant catch of autumn,
stiff whispers of falling leaves.
She must have been the most beautiful thing
around for miles when she wore that pretty
yellow sun dress with polka dots which went down
to her knees and the sun hat which hid
half her crescent face and her auburn hair
which flowed in waves down the nape of her neck.
Autumn was her favorite season, winter
she’d shiver by the hearth, summer she’d sweat
pervasively under the beating sun, and in spring
she was allergic to the pollen that formed
in the flower anthers, she’d wheeze and she’d cough.
But not in autumn when the weather was chilly and the leaves
were dying, giving their last stamina of bronze and reds
and oranges and yellows, before preparing for the winter.
In part, it mirrored her delicate image.
Her beauty was unparalleled in autumn, because she knew
good things were coming to an end:
when the trees were golden, shadows run long
last distant catch of autumn
stiff whispers of fallen leaves.

The stag

The boy looks out the cabin window,
can barely make out
the woods, the lake, the night sky.
Inside it is warm, the fire cackles
and everyone beside him is fast asleep. 

Outside, a cold spectral night,
ice crystals form on the lake.
Upon the snow-white shore a single stag
appears, it’s coat a pale white  
made silver in reflection of an eerie moon. 

The boy lets out a harsh breath
as the stag far in the distance
twists its head
and looks with dark eyes in his direction.
The boy wonders if the stag can see him: 

for who he really is.
As if in fear or some other unknown purpose,
the stag bounds away on its two forelegs;
it’s elegant form in perfect motion.
It never looks back.

TheStag-20190202200305-C.Chen headshot.JPG

Carl Chen

Carl is a high school junior living in Los Angeles, California. He has always found poetry to be therapeutic.