by Kellie Rendina

after Gretchen Steele Pratt’s “To my father on the anniversary of his death”

If you decide to come, bring your all encompassing
blanket. Your sure-footed softness gently creeping
towards the house on the hill. As long as you are
on your way, I will settle into this creaky house,
choose a book off of the dusty shelf and lose myself
among the pages of other worlds. Where
Robert Frost fashions a frosty escape and I
Fall somewhere in between the worlds
“Of easy wind and downy flake.” When you get here,
I might watch your swirling dust surround the eaves
and porch steps. Inside, a spectator. How innocent
you seem. Outside you frighten me.
If you decide to come I will stock up on firewood.
How I love to watch the blaze consume the
splinters. Licking at the carcass of a once-living tree.
Prey to the flames. However you get here, know that
I will fend off your chill with my worn afghan. Each
thread bearing its duty in mind. To defend against
the chill of your furry flakes that beg to be let inside.
I will not be kind. If you decide to come
I will fortify my frame with a cup of winter’s
hottest trend: hot cocoa.

Kellie Rendina is currently a junior at The College of New Jersey. She is an English major and looks forward to pursuing a minor in publishing and editing. She hopes to one day get a job as an Editor at a trade publishing company.