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by Ashley-Elizabeth Best

Shambled hum of the canopy working a rhythm.
I do not have the same ambition as the earth,
my hair breaks like branch ends, the sky dulls,
a robin’s voice peals against the sides of homes.
This tree is no longer young, crooked and
a hollow worn into the bole, slow to foliate.
Marrow-boned clouds oscillate above the tree, as
afternoon lilts into the murk of another evening.
Each ring, each collision with the sky a bite
in the horizon line.

About this Poem

Ashley-Elizabeth Best is a disabled poet and essayist from Kingston.


About the Poetry Blackboard

The Poetry Blackboard showcases poems curated by Kingston's Poet Laureate and written by Kingston poets. There's a new poem every month, written by poets living and dead, historical and contemporary, published and unpublished, adults and children, giving full range to the cultural voice of Kingston. Started in 2015 by Helen Humphreys, the Poetry Blackboard has been continued since 2019 by Jason Heroux.

We wish to thank Helen Humphreys, Kingston's second Poet Laureate, for her generous support of emerging and established poets in Kingston through library programming and our Poetry Blackboard project. Throughout her four years as Poet Laureate, Helen curated a digital collection of poetry to showcase the talents of local creators of all ages, both historic and contemporary. Helen also offered several opportunities for emerging poets to develop their craft, offering group workshops and one-on-one mentorship. Her active engagement with the library and community has been greatly appreciated.

In 2019 we welcomed the incoming Poet Laureate, Jason Heroux, who continues to curate the Poetry Blackboard and to develop new community programming.

Previously Published Poems