An Incomplete Alphabet
A for ache, an acre, a field of oats
N for new words in your mouth, N for now, for noise: grain in a digital
world, the random optical texture of a photograph, over-
a grainy image: round of cheek to round of breast
a curtain of sleeve, blouse: the round of
earth from space is the round of the baby’s
earring, round of her ear
Exposed on park bench, concealed under trees to
enclose you, me:
W-E: light passing between (For
angle, for ache) above the breast, the heart: over-enlarged in
nursing room art: Dar pecho, un regalo que dura toda una vida
a pattern just like the original light source
as with seed, Modotti scattered sun onto film
Not giving, this morning: I hear your chair legs
winnow the floor, reaching for spooned oats in your father’s hand
W-E- (for grain, for give
forgive me) & you reach
for grain instead, for ache
You cry my name
Pure your gentle name, pure your fragile life
Neruda wrote of Modotti when she died
& gave her a garland of earthly things
to soften her exile: a rosary of bees, shadows, fire
Little seed, pepita, granar--we lift the leaves in your flip-flap book
“Why do flowers die?”
Because they are no longer needed
In the photograph, the baby’s mouth
blossoms over the mother’s breast
round as earth from far away
Melissa Reeser Poulin
This poem was written as part of the 20 Poem Challenge.
Melissa Reeser Poulin is a poet and writer in the Pacific Northwest. Her poems and essays appear in a variety of publications and can be viewed at melissareeserpoulin.com.
10/4/2016 03:42:43 pm
Images here are hauntingly, exquisitely lovely--"a rosary of bees", the baby's earring like the round of earth seen from space, the echoing rounds of cheek, breast, earring, earth, the ache of love and tenderness...wonderful!
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