Travel into the bitter north
Following the shooting star
To the fluorescent display that sears
The distance. Aurora Borealis. An oath
The night vows will last eons
Until the last man on the last horse
Says farewell to the smoking earth.
Imagine it, the final ghost
Of harmony, the fading song,
The broken promises of art.

Image credit:Federico Bottos

Joan Colby published widely in journals such as Poetry, Atlanta Review, South Dakota Review, Gargoyle, Pinyon, Little Patuxent Review, Spillway, Midwestern Gothic, and others. Awards included two Illinois Arts Council Literary Awards and an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Literature. She published 21 books, including  Selected Poems, from FutureCycle Press, which received the 2013 FutureCycle Prize, and Ribcage, from Glass Lyre Press, which was awarded the 2015 Kithara Book Prize. Three of her poems were featured on Verse Daily and another was among the winners of the 2016 Atlanta Review International Poetry Contest. Her latest books were Carnival, from  FutureCycle Press, The Seven Heavenly Virtues, from Kelsay Books, and Her Heartsongs, from Presa Press.  Colby was a senior editor of FutureCycle Press and an associate editor of Good Works Review.

Joan Colby died on August 18, 2020.