Saturday, October 03, 2020

Bookmarked (A cadralor)

Chris English, "Auburn, CA: Hummingbird in
Lewis Mock Orange Shrub, May 2009

I ripped them out, root and stem, the mock
oranges that never bloomed. Tapping on
their canes, a hollow sound like a chime
made of bones. Too close to the foundation
of the cottage for the light to reach them, too
close to a time when I didn’t know their name.

Every breath shared, as I open a window to
the day, though there’s woodsmoke on the air.
The snake plant says it will pierce the air for me,
and it does. The clearing fog, lifting; light falling,
playing mumblety-peg with the dagger of a leaf.

Who gave me the gray-green jasper I dug out of
the flower-bed? Whose mouth did I kiss to tongue
the stone, taste the clay? Who was it, pica-kissing
the dirt under my nails, sucking my fingers clean?
I dreamt I’d mislaid myself, woke in a muddy bed.

Some old wives’ tale retold to its roots, when the bone
meal for planting roses began as blood sacrifice—as I
remake garden beds, digging through worms and clay,
I find a coccyx under an old white rose, shank bones
under a sword fern; porous, rusted from the iron seep.

At your touch, memories stir and rise, dust motes from
places in me I’d long forgotten—the sweetness of maple
sugar on my lips, the vanillin lignin smell of pages from
a long-awaited book I opened, as you open me; oh place
your mark, love, hold where we stop for now to start again
later; let’s not forget how our bones will feed the flowers.




To learn more about the new poetic form, the cadralor, see Gleam.


Jessamyn said...

Oh, wow, Lori! This one! (Will you send this one, too?)

Just floored me. So perfectly balanced between life and death.

Unknown said...

Oh Jessamyn - thank you! Just submitted. Love this form.