Song without Strings

This entry is part 62 of 63 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Autumn 2011


Today I want to remember, but remember
beyond mere recognition. To break
the chain that holds the gate in place,

that keeps these soggy woods soggy
under a ponderous gray sky. Where
is the props man? Have him haul up

that sky and lower one in a more
pleasing color: multi-flora. You have
no idea what it takes to sustain

this effort, to remember (I carry
four flesh stumps held to a piece
of gauze by the silver prong

of a safety pin). Tip the bucket
over, let the little stippled fish
swim to the moon. Take it back,

clean its insides of kelp
and constricted tissue. Use it as
a cup from which to drink today

like a woman who isn’t a mother:
just a woman, just a girl who wants
to sit in this chair with no need

to get up real soon, who wants warm
light to love all of her back, who
wants a sip of cold clear water.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Morning Song

This entry is part 63 of 63 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Autumn 2011


Because I dream, I’m told my punishment is that I should always be the first to see dawn arrive at the edge of the world. But ever one to question the edict handed down, I demand proof: why punishment? Today it arrives in darkness, like a soft grey scarf of pulled fiber. So fleecy it seems the animal still breathes softly in its tent of skin. Rain ripples along its sequined flanks. There’s enough light soon to see how it noses into the day— and even when light floods the porch, fills the hollows like tea poured into cups, quilts the wooden planks beneath the window— I’ll always have the echo of its first muted sound in my ear. Tendril wound through my hair; small whisk of breath: I love your ambiguous arrivals. Reminder of what might leap into flame, thicken into honey, should I rub my two hands, stone and flint, together.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.