It cuts through suddenly, expertly, this want to talk to you — like the way you used to open pomegranates. Nothing was wasted, not time, not an extra ruby-seed on the inside. You always said that one does not cut a fruit — you ask them to open, gently, and they would let you in. They knew you would be fair while splitting them. I try to talk to you, cutting through time. It does not open. It says, learn from your mother.
My daughter can’t understand
why, when I press the button,
the parking garage door doesn’t budge.
The car stuck. The park too far
for her small legs to walk. These things
happen, I say. It’s no one’s fault.
In the apartment courtyard, the tenants are gathered —
one complains he’s missing the Laker game,
one can’t charge her cell phone,
another’s laptop is dead.
of course, isn’t the problem — we’re each unprepared
for such sudden loss,
read more at Waxwing Mag
This poem by Patrick Rosal absolutely knocked my socks off.
The second time I learned
I could take the pain
my six-year-old niece
—with five cavities
humming in her teeth—
led me by the finger
to the foyer and told her dad
to turn up the Pretenders
—Tattooed Love Boys—
so she could shimmy with me
to the same jam
eleven times in a row
in her princess pajamas.
When she’s old enough,
I’ll tell her how
I bargained once with God
because all I knew of grief
was to lean deep
into the gas pedal
to speed down a side road
not a quarter-mile long
after scouring my gut
and fogging my retinas
with half a bottle of cheap scotch.
To those dumb enough
to take the odds against
time, the infinite always says
Read more at Four Way Review
Dreamt last night I fed you, unknowingly,
something you were allergic to.
And you were gone, like that.
You don’t have even a single allergy,
but still. The dream cracked. Cars nose-dived
off snow banks into side streets. Sometimes
dreams slip poison, make the living
dead then alive again, twirling
in an unfamiliar room.
It’s hard to say I need you enough.
Today I did. Walked into your morning
shower fully clothed. All the moments
we stop ourselves just because we might
feel embarrassed or impractical, or get wet.
-Tara Skurtu, first published in the minnesota review, found via Poetry Storehouse where you can also hear a beautiful recording
“Each ray of sunshine is eight minutes old,”
Serge told me in New York one December
night. “So when one looks at the sky, one sees
the past?” “Yes, Yes,” he said, “especially
on a clear day.” On January 19,
1987, as I very
early in the morning drove my sister
to Tucson International, suddenly
on Alvernon and 22nd Street
the sliding doors of the fog were opened,
and the snow, which had fallen all night, now
sun-dazzled, blinded us, the earth whitened
out, as if by cocaine, the desert’s plants,
its mineral-hard colors extinguished,
wine frozen in the veins of the cactus.
* * *
The Desert Smells Like Rain: in it I read:
The syrup from which sacred wine is made
is extracted from the saguaros each
summer. The Papagos place it in jars,