Ash Dean


1993 Grafton, Illinois
                  Nobody wants
            to say the river is a villain.
       Even in this particular story arc: water
                                         up to the roof, the overturned

                     swing-set 15 feet below, all four
              rooms of the farmhouse

filled like tanks, the saturated

sofa, contents of the kitchen cabinets
                            removed, tupperware bobbing
             in the silty flow. We watch from the bluff above

as the barn begins to slide,
                       then collapses, board by board
floating away like a long

goodbye. The flood has a force
 to move it, same as the heart,
& a source to feed it
like what we call love.

Ash Dean

Ash Dean is an MFA graduate from The International Writing Program at City University of Hong Kong. He was born in Crawfordsville, Indiana and grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. He currently lives in Suzhou, China. His work has previously appeared in Cha and Ma La, among other places.