memorial for a brilliant woman

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Poetry Thursday

Undertow

I don’t know where
my mother lived before she died,

with a blue lamp,
the what-not shelf,
a cartwheel of snapshots
out of sequence and filled
with strangers, daddy,
who packed an eclair
in my lunch box each morning

with unsweetened tea
in a thermos, to
promote independence.

A chair forgets
the shape of its owner, in time
a hand print fades, painted
over in Williamsburg Blue

there is a color
no one remembers
the sibilant chant, names
rustling through the willows.

In this foreign land,
I have forgotten the tune.

7 comments:

GreenishLady said...

An un-named undercurrent I feel. A sense of disquiet. What is it I'm not really remembering? For me, this poem really conveys a sense of this. Thank you.

jim said...

The what-not shelf!

What's terrific is the detail of the items left behind, and the refusal to sentimentalize all this disappearance and dissolution.

Dana said...

Wow. wow. This is fantastic. The line about the names
rustling through the willows gave me chills.

T.S. said...

Yeah, what they said... and more. You can really taste this one.

Ceebie said...

I love the line about the chair forgetting its owner...The mutability of things...

Great poem!

Kristen King said...

This is stunning. The line breaks are absolutely breathtaking. Love it!

Kristen

twitches said...

Love the rhythm of your lines, so musical. I almost don't care what the content is (although that is good, too) - you have a real gift with language. Just the right word to follow the one before it, for example: "a cartwheel of snapshots."