Mise En Place

A married couple sit on the porch
and hear someone knocking
at the door. It is quite loud.

The wife says Maybe we should answer
the door. It is getting louder.

Their sons are sitting in a dorm room
and also hear someone knocking
at the door. It is slow and heavy.

The older brother says We should take care
of that constant knocking at our door.
It has become unbearable.

Years go by.

The younger brother knows the knocking
at the door is what destroyed their family. He asks

Has anyone asked our sister if she’d like to come inside?

After a few decades of listening to the knocking
at the door, the brothers become too busy to notice it.

The parents become hard of hearing.



About the Poet:
Candice M. Kelsey is a passionate educator who has been working with teenagers for 18 years. She earned her master’s degree in literature from Loyola Marymount. Primarily a poet, she has been published in Poet Lore, The Cortland Review, Hobart Pulp, Burningword, Wilderness House, Leveler, and more. Candice is also the author of a book exploring social media’s impact on adolescent identity. She lives in Los Angeles where she carves out a life with her four children and nine pets; she enjoys listening to opera any chance she gets!


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