Poems from Kelly Shaw

Trying to Say

I have a habit of talking about how

bad I am at driving when there’s someone else

in the car with me.

I’m sure it scares them

and truth is, they’re perfectly safe;

I just can’t help it.

One day, I woke up

and I couldn’t stop warning

people about me.

And that voice became

my own and only.

And it never went away.

And it never went away.

From One Left/For One Leaving

There are some days when

your empty

is very much there.

A little kid can’t stop poking

their tongue in the hole where a tooth was.

Things that have simply


for a long time


a more present kind of absence.

A scene: your empty knocks on my door,

rapping smartly so I am reminded to hear it.

I check the window to see if I know who it is.

I do.

I let it in.

It wipes its feet and makes itself at home.

It looks me in the eyes

and I look away

and it demands forgiveness.

and I give it

and it rolls its eyes

and I apologize for taking so long.

A familiar dance around.

We sit among our loud silences and notice

the time pass.

It taps its foot.

I cough.

We wait.

A Chance Meeting

We exist in the moment when we,


stumbled upon a deer

in the early morning fog of a field.

Both stopped

to stare at one another.

Every step was matched,

every shuffle or irregularity alerting the other,

every noise in the dewy air noted.

Each tried not to startle the other

and both did not recall how to do this.

Even though they were sure this has

all happened before.

The stillness is different every time.

That is the keystone on which nature leans:

everything that




About Kelly Shaw

Kelly Shaw is a 19-year-old, bisexual poet and writer in LA, by way of Austin, who already loves you. She has been writing poetry since she could put two words together. Hopefully you’ll agree it’s continuously improved since then. She has been published in many online publications, including being featured on Hyrudes, a blog with over 14,000 followers. Her poems have also been featured in print, including in a book of poetry by Uber and Wein Publishing. She was a semi-finalist in Poetry Nation’s National Amateur Poetry Competition.


Recent Posts

See All