by Robin Gow Issue: Spring/Summer 2019
Bone mountain ridge:
                                             four peaks.                         Everyone’s dad
should teach them how to punch;
                                First two knuckles
No contact yet,                   a gentle jab.
I ask him to feel                                                  bicep muscles

& he squeezes
& he frowns.

Each morning
                                                I do push-ups on my fists.
                                                Rub ranges
raw. Erosion,                                       weathering:                                  adorning
my hands
                                 with evidence
                                                                that the change is


I will be so red that
                                                 no one
will know                 I was ever a new summit,

smacking at the drywall,                   the oldest son.
Dad walks through
the flesh valley.                 I submit.

There’s no such thing as soft & gentle men.
I practice. I practice all that I can.

Robin Gow

Robin Gow is Editor-at-Large for Village of Crickets. Robin’s poetry has recently been published in POETRY, The Gateway Review, and tilde. He is a graduate student at Adelphi University pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing. He is the Social Media Coordinator for Oyster River Pages and interns for Porkbelly Press. He started and is the director of Trans-cendent Connections, a non-profit for trans and gender non-conforming youth.