Aleathia Drehmer

Aleathia Drehmer was once the editor and creator of Durable Goods and In Between Altered States, co-editor of Full of Crow and Zygote in My Coffee. Her work has been published in print and online since 2006. Her most recent work can be seen in Heroin Love Songs, Fragmented Lines, South Shore Review, Ambrosial Literary Garland, and The Red Penguin Collective. She is currently editing her first novel, Resistance,  and chipping away at the second novel, The Hunted & The Hidden. Aleathia’s love of poetry is ongoing. You can visit her author page at

Two Hands, One Pocket

A young man reads a poem 
about whale watching off the coast 
of Mendocino. His world filled
with tenderness that already
overtakes the wonders of the ocean.

He spoke of two hands sharing 
one pocket, and I wanted to cry. 
Maybe because I have someone 
who would love me like this, 
or maybe because I don't know 
how to accept it. 

My trust has been tied up in knots 
by nimble sailors and pirates, 
all of them wanting to lash me to the mast 
at high seas; to watch as the salted wind
cut lines across my face.
Some part of me was willing 
to take their scraps of love like a gull 
as the ropes tightened around my chest. 

These days I stick to the woods 
and get dizzy on the smell of pine 
and mushrooms, fall madly in love
with the mud caked to my boots.
I collect pebbles and acorns 
now, instead of shells and sea glass.

The woods holds the ghost of my father,
the ponds ripe with trout, my mother,
and every bird sings to me the sweetness
of the man who would give me everything
But sometimes, the ocean calls like a siren
who I’ve learned to ignore, wrapped 
in leaves instead.

I can’t go to the beach anymore, 
the sun with it's poison rays 
and the sound of the tide that subdues me 
into pliability. The water is too seductive,
and the expanse of the universe so evident
above and below that I almost see myself in it.

When my heart aches for the darkness,
I listen to recordings of oceans and tides 
at night, and find dreams in the way the water 
licks the shore, pulling me so far under 
that I remember how easy it is to drown.

This Year We Have a Solstice Bush

(after Jason Fisk)

I can tell you over sharing 
is from being poor, from being 
a floating island in the river of responsibility 
our parents didn't know how to navigate. 

The want to belong to another human
in some small, but significant way,
to make you feel whole
for just a moment, is deafening.

The failed understanding
of hope and forgiveness
drags the soul to extremes
to return something lost
long ago that it’s hard
to remember the space it occupied.

Age cuts away the wonder
so deeply it almost steals
your breath, yet it clings,
hangs on by one strand
of silver, shining tinsel.

And then, we are given the chance
to rebuild a shattered life
with the spark appearing 
in the tiny faces we’ve created with hubris,
giving us one more chance to get it right.

One thought on “Aleathia Drehmer

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