Saturday, November 28, 2009

7:15, yet morning is barely able to seep through the rainclouds. Almost daylight seems to be rising from the ground rather than descending from the sky. And it's windy. Already, the power has flickered on and off, on and off. But the woodstove did blaze up with the first match, despite the gusts choking the draught; and the power is on, at least temporarily, meaning that I can grind coffee. So here I sit, warmish, next to an itchy dog, listening to the comfortable sounds of crackling poplar logs and a functioning refrigerator. It's fine, it's okay, it's being alive, even with a few modern conveniences. It's also like being a character in a fairy tale, here in my cottage in the wild wood, with the north wind beating on my door. But I am too old to be the wet wandering princess tapping at the window or the quick-witted woodcutter's daughter who invites her in. It's hard not to be a little sad about that.


Dawn Potter

All the long day, rain

pours quicksilver

down the blurred glass.

gardens succumb to forest,


half-ripe tomatoes cling

hopelessly to yellow vines,

cabbages crumple and split,

but who cares?


Let summer vanish,

let the tired year

shrink to the width

of a cow path,


soppy hens straggle

in their narrow yard,

and every last leaf

on the maples redden,


shrivel, and die.

Nothing needs me,

today, but you,

sweet hand,


cupping the bones

of my skull.  Alas,

poor Yorick, picked clean

as an egg.


How rich we grow,

bright sinew and blood,

my eyes open, yours


[forthcoming in How the Crimes Happened (CavanKerry Press, 2010)].

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