The life before

Dark wings like a damp umbrella—
the smell of rain before rain itself.

Light a sheet beaten with spoons,
glancing mercurial off water.

High on cliff ledges, rare birds’ nests.
Mummies in caves, prim with drawn knees.

What you touched in me: medallion with raised edges.

Mummies in caves, prim with dawn knees.
High on cliff ledges, rare birds’ nests.

Glancing mercurial off water,
light a sheet beaten with spoons.

The smell of rain before rain itself.
Dark wings like a damp umbrella.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← Mango

Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What is Left of Wings, I Ask (2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.