She dreamt best with her pillow turned inside-out, the forced white moon.

Personified. In the evening, trees grow limbs and swim deep in moonlit lakes, avoiding the ocean, avoiding the moonlight and the crispness of their leaves, the funnel into the sea, escape.

They avoid dreams.

He waited for more.

She didn’t know what else to tell him. The summer was an antique tree, there. A river spiraled like hair around the base of a hill that looked like sea grass. Red had become brown. Black, gray.


It seemed the perfect place to hide children.


Exactly what she didn’t say.

His eyes like clear aqua looked wet in the darkness, reflections off the window, when he asked if Heaven was in the stars–

if their mother could touch them whenever the sky turned black, stars sprinkled across the horizon like confetti.

So she told him of the harbor – the longest way from home,

the only place left to find winter lilies.


About mckenzielynntozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives and writes in Indiana, where she works as a virtual assistant, editor, and freelance writer via her self-started business, MLT Creative. She received her MFA in Poetry from Western Michigan University, where she worked as the Layout and Design Editor for New Issues Poetry and Prose and as an Assistant Poetry Editor for Third Coast. She previously completed her B.S. in Secondary English Education and B.A. in English, with a Concentration in Writing, at Indiana University South Bend, where she worked as the Managing Editor for 42 Miles Press. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Emerge Literary Journal, Encore Magazine, Thank You for Swallowing, The Spooklet, Sleet Magazine, and Analecta, among others; and her book reviews and essays have appeared on The Rumpus and Motherly. When not writing, she enjoys art and music, and the simple mathematics of being a wife of one, a mama of two, and a cat-mom of three. For more, visit View all posts by mckenzielynntozan

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