Two Poems


A poem with lines stolen from my father’s obituary

The story is simple. When I touched
the handle, the blade became a cluster
of moths that scattered. Then I dreamt
of a child, irradiated. Green
light, green veins. For the love
of green, do you think you could
sit with me a moment? Do you think you
could recite the narrative lies
of my life? Like jewels lining
the vertebrae. Like architecture. I once knew
a man who was a carpenter. He loved
good times music. The story
is simple, as in, the story
is everywhere. I once picked daffodils
in a blue dress and knew the neighbors
were amused at the idea of a girl. None
of it fit—the dress, the nauseous
yellow flowers, the gaze. Most of
what I’ve inherited is made of glass
or sleeping in a cell. It took
some time to remember our bodies
proportioned to those years, the field
of hay bales we discovered in the rain,
the rotting deer
stand, the man calling over
a hill, how my sisters and I hushed
like leverets and fled. Let night
cradle the house because nothing
else would. I knew a man who
was a carpenter, he built little
cabinets for us to store things
things we loved but now
I can’t remember what they were.
Outside, you are planting trees
And I am inside a house inside a body
inside a house. It is early March. The flavor
of the rain has changed from boneroot
to mint and cedar. My mother, twice
my age this year, tells me she’s hopeful
as we burn old mirrors between us.
Outside, you are planting trees but I will
not taste what they bear. The other day
you said, I see now you’ll never want
to get married. There is water in the air
as well as the earth. Summer and winter
remember but most of a life
happens in between. I dreamt of my father
boring holes into a boat just to gesture
at repair. You never met him, which is fine,
I hardly met him. But you’re planting
trees and I am arcitecturting a landscape
of exits and all of this seems relevant.
The distance between what I said
and what I meant might be a stone in my
palms. When I toss it up, she will be a bird,
black-eyed, beating. She will scatter.
You will love me the only way you know.

Caitlin Scarano