Independence Day

by Sandra Kolankiewicz

But that was when I was thoughtless, when
important considerations did
not occur to me, though obvious
to everyone else, as if I were
some feral soul who’d never learned how
to conduct myself beyond picking
up the garbage I created as
I moved from here to there, my fate not
compromised until I had children
whose diapers entered the landfill, and
thus I joined the mystery of the
larger community that does not
mind when everything looks equal, a meal
at Olive Garden in Denver the
same as one in New Orleans, the plate
knowable despite geography.
Now I’ve shaken hands with tragedy,
made him my friend, a politer form
of sniffing tails and letting bygones
be. Our beasts snore on the rug by the
fire while we converse in low tones of
how we’ll work together to create
a life we believe we can endure,
a glass of alkalized water raised
to all who’ve survived shattering, and
to surprises still to come, our old
bruises obvious to those who look,
and on the bare skin of everyone
we meet who knows loss, recovery,
and the daily redemption of love.

Musical composition by Victor David Sandiego

Sandra Kolankiewicz's poems have appeared widely, most recently in Adelaide, London Magazine, New World Writing and Appalachian Heritage. Turning Inside Out was published by Black Lawrence. Finishing Line has released The Way You Will Go and Lost in Transition. She lives with her family in Marietta, Ohio.


I love that you did the musical piece that goes along with it. Perfect.
Sandra Kolankiewicz, Dec 17, 2018
Thank you Sandra for your contribution and your reading. As I’ve said before, the audio recordings really make my day because I get to hear the author out loud from a far internet distance, something I would likely be unable to do otherwise. Many thanks.
Victor D. Sandiego, Dec 14, 2018