Wonderfold Winner

a response to November’s #Wonderfold Prompt

Our winner this month is the haibun “For Lack of Light” written by Kathleen Cain. We received many wonderful submissions and would love to remind you that if you weren’t picked this time, to be on the lookout for the next #Wonderfold! You never know who will be our next winner!


For Lack of Light

Four a.m., even at the end of June, would have been too dark for you to see any light yet in the maple. The beginning and end of every day begins in the tree-tops. Did you know that? Though we know by now you were not looking for light.

The blue rope, slipped easily from its shelf or its hook in the garage. How did you manage, out there in the dark by yourself, to slip-knot the rope around the tree and then noose it around your neck? Was it your fire juggler’s skill that allowed such lethal deftness? A hundred times my heart has clenched at the thought of your father, how he must wish he’d stored that rope out of sight. And for your brother Levi, the last one to see you alive at one a.m., who cannot forgive himself for not sensing your darkness.

We’ve all gone on counting without you, summer into fall. The leaf-loosening winds arrived and departed. Your maple, always the reddest in the neighborhood, holds on, its leaves like tattered prayer flags. All of them alive when you were. It’s an anguish to watch leaves drop from the lilac bushes, or from the bush with the hard blue berries that none of the birds like, there at the border between your parents’ yard and mine. Soon I’ll be able to see the bare maple when I open the windows in the morning to let in the light—which I always do. Which I always will. And you, seated like a crumpled buddha, there at the foot of the tree. No longer dreaming.

the autumn
with its red and green tears
wind stirs from the north

©2018 Kathleen Cain

The next #WonderFold prompt goes live soon so be on the look out! We hope to see a response from you next time 🙂

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