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Posts Tagged ‘paradox’

Hankering

Today again I thank the arugula

for the way it teaches me

that sharpness, too, is what

draws us in, that we come

not just to forgive

but to crave what is bitter,

what bites us back.

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Docetaxel

 

The yew can live to be over two thousand years old—

a sacred tree that grows large enough for forty people

 

to stand inside it. Today, its ancient power fits

in a clear plastic bag the size of two fists and it drips

 

through a clear plastic tube into the chest of my friend.

In three days, she will not want to move. She will not

 

want to eat. She will wonder if it’s all worth it.

It will last a week. So strange that a plant

 

that causes death when consumed will help

to save her life. Her hair has been gone for weeks.

 

But today, on her last day of chemo, I marvel

at how she is being infused with evergreen

 

in the hopes that she will transmogrify, carry

in her the mystery that grows in the bark of the tree.

 

When a yew branch touches the ground, it takes root.

Sprouts again. Let her body know this secret. Amen.

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Missing

 

 

Hope is, perhaps, a quantum thing,

a paradox, like Schrödinger’s cat,

simultaneously alive and dead.

 

Today, I wandered the snowy field

and the icy banks and the shadowed wood,

calling the name of my sweet gray cat.

 

If I could find her now, I’d see

she’s either alive or dead.

But in this moment of uncertainty,

 

she’s both alive and dead to me.

I’m tugged by both possibilities as I wade

through tall dry grass. Oh damn that hope,

 

and bless it, too, how just a candle-measure

opposes a whole tower of unfounded certainty,

sends me out into the blizzard

 

calling her name, listening.

 

 

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grief and celebration

share the same bed—

one keeps stealing the blanket

the other

keeps knitting a beautiful new one

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pulling on my mask

as my nom de plume

unbuttons her blouse again

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One Parenting

 

 

in the same hand

I hold the rope to bind you,

the scissors to cut you free

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Yesterday, I spoke with KSJD radio in a 10-minute interview about how poems–both writing and reading them–might help us navigate uncertain times. You can listen to the interview here.

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beside the waterfall—

this wish to applaud married to

this wish to be very quiet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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One

One Prediction

 

 

not one cloud

and still the heart’s forecast

is for rain

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One Confession

hold me, I say

then put on a dress

of thorns—

blood on your cheek, your hands,

I kiss you there

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