Words For It – by Devon Miller-Duggan


I’m sorry for your troubles.

Tectonic plates shift underneath my feet
every step, every waking.

You must be comforted knowing he’s in a better place.

From the air, the clear-cut side of an entire mountain
looks as if bombs had gone off—
ashen, blasted, every tree scarred ground.

I know what you’re going through.

Every breath
smothered again by a 40-foot wave.

He was a good man. He’ll be sorely missed.

Black balloon inside the head—
every breath feeds it bigger.

Time is the only healer.

Every hand reaches with a razor.




Devon Miller-Duggan has published poems in Rattle, Shenandoah, Margie, Christianity and Literature, Gargoyle. She teaches Creative Writing at the University of Delaware. Her books include Pinning the Bird to the Wall in 2008 and a chapbook, Neither Prayer, Nor Bird in 2013.