Emily K. Michael


Listen to Audio Version.

Forgive her, comrades, for she has sinned.
It's been three weeks since our last exchange.

She stopped me after class—hands brushing
wisps of honey hair off her forehead— nervous
complement to confession:

I really admire your work, your spirit,
how you don't let blindness
get you down.

Do I tell her blindness gets me up?

She supposes it's all to do
with her childhood. She had something
of a girl-crush on Helen Keller.

Even learned a little braille–
very little.
She can't read the bathroom signs,
but she knows those tiny dots
are for blind people.


Emily K. Michael is a blind poet, musician, and writing instructor, living in Jacksonville, FL. Her poetry and essays have appeared in Wordgathering; The Hopper; Artemis Journal; Compose Journal; Disability Rhetoric; Breath & Shadow; Bridge Eight; Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics; I Am Subject Stories: Women Awakening, BREVITY'S Nonfiction Blog, and Mosaics: A Collection of Independent Women (Vol. 2). She develops grammar workshops for multilingual learners and participates in local writing festivals. Find her on Twitter (@ModwynEarendel) and at her blog On the Blink.