Kersten Christianson

★ ★ ★ ★


Image by Yannick Pulver

Come-hither to the Hearth

On a day of gale, downpour, 
leaf-drop, I invite the poem home 
for a drink. This was no spontaneous

decision, but a well-thought plan.
It may have involved a wink, 
a flash of leg, before ushering him in

through the front door, porch eaves 
dripping a wild rhythm, staccatoed 
by autumn wind blast.  I drape his sodden 

jacket over the arm of a chair to dry. 
Perched on the sofa’s edge he watches 
as I spark candles, the small psst of kindle 

plays against the jangle of ice and gin 
in glasses emblazoned with tiny saturns, 
shooting stars, moons.  Words bead 

along his tongue, scatter like seed 
against the worn-wood surface of a paper-
cluttered desk. Dusk wraps its nighttime 

woolen scarf around us while poem 
whispers in my ear, makes no promises,
leaves a few words behind.

From the Outer Coast

A scallop plucked
from the low tide pool
held between two 
fingers in wan

She explains 
it has 200 eyes
primitive, rough,
silver beads stitched
in slick, orange mantle,
glowing in the headlamp’s

I ponder the puddled
memory of bivalved
wonder.  Does she cling
to the rudimentary,
the tidal zone’s ebb
and flow of picnic
and frost?  

Do her eyes discern
a pattern?  Here, love clings 
to eel grass, propelled 
by the tiny arms of sea 
star larvae adrift
for 45 days.

In argent moonlight,
cupped in a curved palm,
a scallop returns to rocky

When the Heart Leaps 

The pompom heart wreath
hangs on the front door, teeter-
totters in the wind.

Paper hearts blaze red
in a bookshop window. They
woo, beckon me in.

On the for-sale page:
Cupid’s arrow candlesticks.
$2.00 for love.

Alaskan Poet, Moon Gazer, Raven Watcher, Northern Trekker, Teacher. Kersten Christianson derives inspiration from wild, wanderings, and road trips. Kersten is the poetry editor of Alaska Women Speak. She has authored Curating the House of Nostalgia (Sheila-Na-Gig, 2020), What Caught Raven’s Eye (Petroglyph Press, 2018), and Something Yet to Be Named (Kelsay Books, 2017).  Kersten lives with her daughter in Sitka, Alaska and delights in road trips, bookstores, and smooth ink pens.


  1. Anonymous

    Wonderful poems!

    • Anonymous

      Beautiful! Congratulations Kiersten!

  2. Anonymous

    Kersten Christianson’s poems are a comforting embrace.


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