In my breathing, in the breath that escapes my body
I feel a disturbance, the shimmying of some animal
Primal with fear. With anger.
All that is edged.
And how what remains behind is just my humanity
Stripped down to the leanness of survival.
Without anger. Without edge.
Just the soft breath of fear.
Ken Holland is an award-winning poet whose work has been widely published in such journals as Rattle, Southwest Review, The Cortland Review and Poetry East. Most recently in The Carolina Quarterly, Wisconsin Review, and Stillwater Review, with poetry forthcoming in The Chariton Review and The American Journal of Poetry. A Pushcart nominee, he placed first in the 2019 Stephen DiBiase competition, and third in the 2020 Naugatuck River Review contest. His poems have also been featured in a number of anthologies. He resides in Fishkill, New York, and reads throughout the Hudson Valley or wherever Zoom will take him. He's currently engaged in compiling several manuscripts.