“Lava” by Cameron Morse

From my hurt back

the snow-lit predawn sky is pewter,

or lava, according to my best

guess color chart

on Pinterest. “Pewter” works,

but I like lava because it feels red

on the inside, always ready

to erupt. Yeah, that’s me,

all right: the disaster magnet

whose back gives out

on the toilet Christmas morning

now has COVID-19 with special thanks

to chemotherapy: body hair

in the bathtub. My wife grows wary

of the holidays. Theo thanks me

for the crane truck over the phone in the E.R.


Cameron Morse is Senior Reviews editor at Harbor Review and the author of eight collections of poetry. His first collection, Fall Risk, won Glass Lyre Press’s 2018 Best Book Award. His latest is The Thing Is (Briar Creek Press, 2021). He holds an MFA from the University of Kansas City-Missouri and lives in Independence, Missouri, with his wife Lili and (soon, three) children. For more information, check out his Facebook page or website.

Photo by Pawel Czerwinski on Unsplash

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