Eliminate — By Ronda Miller

Use it to describe refined sugar, coffee,

or animal protein I removed from my diet.

It works for exercise, although I didn’t

have it to eliminate anyway.

Use it to discuss a policy that won’t work,

a police suspect who’s been ruled out,

or a boyfriend you no longer wish to date.


It works for the red dress left

at the store because it doesn’t fit right.

But let’s not use it to describe

the person dying in the street,

the one a government or police

state threw a weapon in front

of as an excuse to watch them bleed out.


People aren’t eliminated,

human life is too precious

to equate it to taking out the trash.

~ Ronda Miller

Ronda Miller enjoys wandering the high plateau of NW Kansas where the Arikaree Breaks whisper late into the sunset and scream into blizzards and thunderstorms. She lives in Lawrence close to her son and daughter. She is a district president and state vice president for Kansas Authors Club. She is a life coach specializing in working with those who have lost someone to homicide. She dances every chance she gets. She has poetry in numerous online and hard copy publications that include the Smithsonian Institute. Her books include Water Signs, Going Home: Poems from My Life and MoonStain.

Guest Editor Denise Low, second Kansas Poet Laureate, has published over 20 books of award-winning poetry and essays, including Ghost Stories (Woodley) and Natural Theologies, essays about Mid-Plains literature (Backwater Press). Low was visiting professor at the University of Richmond and Kansas University. She taught at Haskell Indian Nation University, where she founded the creative writing program. She served Associated Writing Programs as board president. She and her husband Thomas Pecore Weso publish Mammoth Publications.


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