Tricia Knoll

Climbing the Marble Monument Stairs

I am half way up
unsure if you will follow
as I formulate a murky question
and reform it under a gray sun

slow on the three steep steps
to the first open landing
to sense how my muscles work
and see you lumbering

way below, looking to the east
horizon as if it might be
beautiful or portend rain
as you tuck under your arm

a blue cotton sack with bulges
that might be brass candlesticks
or rubber cudgels. This landing
is wide enough for waiting,

stone worn on the tread
with breathless arrivals
of so many others
as you draw near

your blue eyes reflect clouds,
your soles scuff on marble,
an old man with his ponderous sack
and I forget my question

which had something to do
with trust.


Tricia Knoll is a Vermont poet. Her work has received 8 Pushcart nominations and appears in many journals. Her recent collection How I Learned To Be White (Antrim House) received the Gold Prize for Poetry Book Category for Motivational Poetry in the Human Relations Indie Book Prize for 2018. Her other publications include Urban Wild (Finishing Line Press), Ocean’s Laughter (Kelsay Books), and Broadfork Farm (The Poetry Box). Website:

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