A Fable, by Karin Gottshall
There was a girl who set out with a tiger
on a long journey. She’d never before left her home
but he came to her with his startled eyes
and she left the dishes drying on the wooden rack,
the linens folded in the closet, left her flowered
dresses and the complicated song of fear
to travel with him among rocks, in meadows of wild iris.
They walked through the deep pastures and slept
in the wind, on soft grasses. They walked
and walked, and in the end that’s all they had —
they weren’t magical beings, they couldn’t know
each others’ hearts. Through the loops and arteries
of their clean bodies slid their secret sorrows,
and in no place in this world could they lay them down —
they loved the sight too much: the snow
and clear streams, the leaping birds.
Aidan is sleeping, and Vincent is thoroughly absorbed in cutting newspaper into itty-bitty pieces with his little scissors — one of a few sporadic interludes of quiet time I manage each day.
It could end at any second, though — we have squirrels running around in our ceilings, between the 2nd & 3rd floors, egads they make a racket, and now one of them is crying, I think it could be hurt. That’s what it sounds like, anyway. And the sound is totally wigging Vincent out.
Because I’m not working, I haven’t purchased any books for a while, but because my entire book collection is now out of storage, I have plenty to read, so many books I forgot I owned. The stack most in use at the moment is the small one in the living room, comprised of:
- Fanatic Heart, by Deborah Pope (Louisiana State University Press, 1992). A kindred spirit, many poems about her son. “Firstborn”, the long poem that opens her third section, is a stunner.
- World’s Tallest Disaster, by Cate Marvin (Sarabande, 2001). I’ve had an advanced reader’s copy of this forever, but it was tucked away in a box.
- Cusp, by Jennifer Grotz (Mariner Books, Houghton Mifflin, 2003). “Not This Raw Fluttering” is a poem to post for sure come spring.
- Unrelenting Readers: The New Poet-Critics, edited by Paul M. Hedeen and D.G. Myers (Story Line Press, 2004). I’ve read this before, but I’ve been hankering for prose on poetry, and this fits the bill.
- Grace, Fallen From, by Marianne Boruch (Wesleyan University Press, 2008). One of my last purchases from the bookshop. Hardcover! — but completely worth it.
- Crocus, by Karin Gottshall (Fordham University Press, 2007). Also part of that last purchase. One of my favorite poetry books in a while. Poem to come.