Kevin Holton

The February Selected Poet is Kevin Holton

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I’ve lived my life upon the wind
I haven’t sense of destiny
So take this as a last request
Don’t you dare remember me.

Etch not my name into the trees
Do not mar the gnarled bark-
Walk between them with my ghosts
Then follow me into the dark.

Treasure not the ground below,
In it we’re all the same.
If rock is placed above my skull,
Do not inscribe a name.

My work alone is what I leave,
My passion, yes, my art.
Cling not to flesh and memory
When the world I do depart.

If you wish to honor me,
There is only one way:
Write my name within the dust
And let the wind blow me away.


Visibility at sixteen feet,
Earth’s surface smolders black, red,
Sick, sick green as I adjust
Gas mask, tightening the straps.

Skyscrapers pierce the smog,
Towering over barren patches
Where farmlands might’ve been,
Where animals might once have crawled.

I don’t remember the times before
Exponential change ripped this climate
Apart, don’t remember the ways we lived
When people had the luxury of throwing out

Expired food. Scavenging in dumpsters,
Scouts like me carry refuse back,
Feeding our children half-rotten scraps,
Taste of mold and arrogance on our tongues.

Humans were always survivors.
We assumed mankind would outlast
All other species.

We did.


Take a break from Type A hype,
Business attire back in the bedroom,
Boardroom-ready, far from the sand,
Where she headstands her way
Through mounting stress.

Blood rushing down, hardly
Aware of red-face, steady flow of air.
Breathe, coos the coach, slow, strong,
One with the elements. Who cares?
Yoga keeps her toned, slim,

Payday ranks higher for the hot,
Beauty equated with ability.
Feet in the air, she cannot see
Sunbeams lighting the soles of her feet,
Nor hear calming lulls from a rising sea.

Sixty seconds, her internal alarm cries,
Needing every pose quantified.
Lowering legs back to Earth,
Business tycoon rises, standing, satisfied,
Thinking of spreadsheets as her heart rate falters.


Wandering the alleys of my mind,
I cherish all of me that she destroys.
My loyalty she will repay in kind.

Though we are naught to her but helpless toys,
Succumbing to her wherever she goes,
Her mania is not without its poise.

Though some are trapped in torturous throes,
I delight in her dark revelry:
The element of madness in repose.

Speaking in tongues, she brings ecstasy.
My mind is filled with fantasy galore
For celebrating this insanity.

She gives me everything I want and more—
I know not what Delusion has in store.

Kevin Holton is a cyborg and coffee addict from coastal New Jersey. He's the author of three upcoming novels: The Nightmare King (Siren's Call Publications), At the Hands of Madness (Severed Press), and These Walls Don't Talk, They Scream (HellBound Books). He also co-wrote the short film Human Report 85616. His short work has been published with Radiant Crown Press, Helios Quarterly, Sci-Phi, The Literary Hatchet, The Mad Scientist Journal, Transmundane Press, and Thunderdome Press, among others. When not reading and writing, he can be found narrating audiobooks, talking about Batman, or recharging in a dark room somewhere.