Seen in the reflection
of one side is
I would say that I’m not
except that I am.
This is my pride and shame in equal parts.
It proves that I am a woman of genius.
You see, my head is too small,
even though it is large for a woman,
and my brain presses against the skull,
like a neck to a tight collar.
My husband, Thomas, tells me that when
I become nervous, I should count the
contents of his medical bag in my head
and only ever ask about the weather.
I know every instrument;
I have held them in my hands.
How are you finding the weather today,
This explains my efficiency
with numbers and processes.
But does not explain
my anxiety with people.
has a bewitching effect
Seen in the reflection
A once simple medical instrument
Yet I do
a carousel of images march
in beautiful assembly.
Have you ever seen a sky made
of such blue that dresses could
be cut from it?
I have seen that same taffeta sky
turn black, holding treasures.
And then, look, Emily...
staring back at me...
by this power in my hands
I have seen the setting sun
and the rising stars in
I should have set my mind on him. Imposed my will. Bit down on that gangrenous leg with my own teeth and buried it with the worms.
Today is a sad day for us, Emily.
I am most distressed to tell you that we
have lost a husband and I a father, too.
That gentle, marvelous hand that never strayed from the healing touch
and not once was placed on me except in comfort or by way of pride.
Tell me he has returned to your bosom with grace and in dignity and with his leg and I will believe in these powers just once.
No one will remember the man who travelled from Guangdong.
He is worth sixty dollars, paid in full.
No matter how far he
travels, his destiny is clear.
It is written in rock and
the salty sweat of work.
Who is left in Guangdong and benefits from the sale of his body and labor?
I wonder . . . will he ever make it home?
The value of this glove is not apparent
at first, but ask Kat Loving and a hand
she would give for it, with only one
remaining to touch the comforts
of what was once . . .
Where are you? Perhaps buried somewhere with your master . . .
In the thickness of rose petals, I reached my hands through
to see if she’d grab hold, but instead there was only her
hair ribbon — caught and pierced by a thorn.
Stolen from the bottom of her wheat-colored braid.
It was four months until Jane was found, in parts, and the weekend gardener taken away.
In his pocket was the twin ribbon..
I would rather find both to a lifeless owner, than hold one in my hand and hope.