Karen Vande Bossche


Alice may have fallen down a rabbit hole
all by herself, but it’s Fibonacci numbers,
patterns marched out in hearts and spades,
the number five, that laughs, that prods
me over the edge.  Remember it’s the roses
you are supposed to be painting, not thorns.
Bright enough to complete the counting:
1, 1, 2 . . . me, you, become two and, one
more, bunnies increase, multiply.  3, 5, 8 . . .
that five, that unstable primal number
that continues to falter through 1, 2, 3
more tries.  How can the queen be
in the counting house and the kitchen?
Two parents, three children, five
form a family.   Minus one, minus one,
minus one, minus one.  Back
to a table set for tea, set with broken
cups, broken promise:  set for 1.



Karen Vande Bossche is a Bellingham, Washington, poet and short story writer who teaches middle school. Some of her more recent work can be found in Clover, a Literary Rag, Crack the Spine, Lunch Ticket, and Poetry Quarterly. Karen was born in the Midwest, raised in Southern California, and is firmly planted now in the Pacific Northwest.

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