On the train there are people with all kinds of minds. They’re going home to all kinds of rooms designed by different kinds of architects. There are architects who call the future a storm and then there are architects who as children read a book about a wise old king who had eleven clever daughters. One daughter died at a tragically young age but was remembered bittersweetly. They still name things after her, like dawns and trains. One daughter promised never to marry until a man bested her in single combat. One daughter kept exotic chickens and named them after famous actors. One daughter stayed out too late in the wrong kind of moonlight and was transformed into a white-tailed deer. One wore yellow shoes every day of her life. One spoke only in cracks and rustles because she wanted to preserve the native language of endangered trees. One was a calligrapher and spent decades contemplating the delicious commonalities between the words clever and eleven. One was a great mathematician-philosopher and wrote a celebrated treatise on the question of whether things happen twice or whether they only really happen once. One was an explorer and a naturalist who wrote about her adventures then buried the books in the ground so only advanced civilizations could read them, in the future after the storm. One daughter should have been twin daughters but she ate her sister in the womb. The last and youngest daughter was a poet, and in his wisdom the old king counted his blessings and banished her forever.
Meghan Kemp-Gee lives somewhere between Vancouver, BC, and Fredericton, NB. She writes poetry, comics, and scripts of all kinds. Her poetry has appeared in publications including PRISM international, Copper Nickel, Altadena Poetry Review, and Train. She teaches composition and co-created Contested Strip, the world’s best comic about ultimate frisbee. You can find her on Twitter: @MadMollGreen.