Fritz Ward
What It Is

Love is the Mariana Trench.


Fatherhood is the Tilt-a-Whirl, the Gravitron, the Scrambler.


Motherhood is the honeysuckle and the havoc.


Childhood is the mansion we haunt. 


Love is the way we detonate each day.

Tuesday is sacrosanct and snarl—its pollen gussying up the sidewalks with green.


Tomorrow is the mystery machine hotwiring the Holocene.


The heart is a sea anemone.


Love is the felony.


Your mother is your mother is your mother.


Life is the strawberry patch we dust with blood meal.


I’m the man planting peonies, offering you answers without promises.


You are a cherry-bomb of tenderness.


I’m the man cawing to the congress of crows in the sweetgum above.


You are the sour tang of life fermenting. 


I’m the carpenter in the coffin guessing its Halloween, my heart hemorrhages into the dark.


You are the promise and the answer and the waves of forgetting.


You are the god-sized ocean demanding our devotion.


You are you no matter what I am.




Found In Volume 53, No. 02
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  • Fritz Ward
Fritz Ward
About the Author

Fritz Ward is the author of Tsunami Diorama (The Word Works, 2017) and the chapbook Doppelganged (Blue Hour Press, 2011). His poetry has appeared in Poetry, Best New Poets, The Adroit Journal, Quarterly West, and elsewhere. He works at Swarthmore College and lives just outside of Philadelphia.