Two Poems

Krystal Howard

Haunting the Meadows


Wandering through the meadow searching for places where the dirt shows through— looking to where the trees touch the sky, thinking everything must be written in the grasses.


The silence inside a house doesn’t surprise me and I wonder at the loudness of the open air. Grasses so tall they reach past my hemline to interrupt my knees as I move. I tend to the herb garden kept just beyond the yard.


So many secrets kept balled-up underfoot. Light shines through the opaque curtains in the kitchen, and the only witness slips behind the moon’s back.




The Pure Thing


Afterwards I wondered

about the making of the moon.

How the ghost clouds hovered


in front of it that night, the starlight

corrupted by the streetlamps. Your mouth

collapsing into the dark— how I’ve devoted


myself to the shadow of us. I only wish

your hands would reach for my body again. Only

naked branches snarl, blot out my view


of the water behind our house. Only snow covers

this thing between us.

And look how even the windows crawl,


look how even light intercedes.

I must be still to feel it.

If you loved me, you would tear me open,


not from underneath, but from the palm,

split the skin, pull out the heart line

from heel to index.


I take it back.

There is one pure thing.






















 About the Writer
Split Lip Magazine

Krystal Howard holds an MFA in Poetry and is currently a PhD candidate at Western Michigan University where she teaches courses in children’s literature, young adult literature, and writing. She serves as production editor for Comparative Drama and has previously served as poetry editor for Third Coast. Her poetry has been published in Barn Owl Review, Quarterly West, Tupelo Quarterly, Superstition Review, and PANK, among others. For more information, please visit her website.