Women are leaving their men. In other words,

they are writing the story they were afraid to write.


Some fables take years to devise;

others, days. As for me, I take the long way.

I tiptoe through the tulips.


Once transformed into a tree,

the girl can’t escape the woods.

Some fresh threat around the bend.


It’s not like this with everything.

Most days, I’m at ease in a crowd.

A bowl of fruit becomes, again, a bowl.


You can always flee a forest fire. A tree cannot.

Survival depends upon the nature of the flame.


I know what you’re thinking;

everyone’s the hero in their own story.


It’s true. The laurel’s bark is charred

and bristling. Left alone

the tree becomes, again, a tree.

Jennifer Moore was born and raised in Seattle. She is the author of The Veronica Maneuver (University of Akron Press, 2015), and her poems have appeared in Crazyhorse, DIAGRAM, The Cincinnati Review, and elsewhere. An associate professor of creative writing at Ohio Northern University, she lives in Bowling Green, Ohio.