Let He Who Is Without by Kevin Brown

She carved my sins
in soil we left untended,
remains of a garden
from the previous owners,
letting time and wind
wear them away
in a week, maybe two,
at most, while her family
forged them into iron

sculptures they set out
on the front lawn when we
visited, announcing my failings
to their friends and neighbors.
They gave her miniature models
for the mantel
every birthday,
misshapen representations

of occasions where I neglected
to call when late or events
we did not share
with her cousins
or nieces and nephews,

got creative one Christmas
with a keychain she could carry
everywhere, a die-cast car
to remind her of all
I could not provide.

They helped her
wrap them in newspaper,
told her they could be sold
as scrap with her wedding band.

About the author:

Kevin Brown is a Professor at Lee University. He has published two books of poetry: A Lexicon of Lost Words (winner of the Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry, Snake Nation Press) and Exit Lines (Plain View Press, 2009) and two chapbooks: Abecedarium (Finishing Line Press, 2011) and Holy Days: Poems (winner of Split Oak Press Chapbook Contest, 2011). He also has a memoir, Another Way: Finding Faith, Then Finding It Again (Wipf and Stock, 2012), a book of scholarship, They Love to Tell the Stories: Five Contemporary Novelists Take on the Gospels (Kennesaw State University Press, 2012). He received his MFA from Murray State University.