No Poetry Today
Yesterday was mourning doves nesting in the cedars,
woodpeckers on the old black walnut trunk banging out
a living, the rain tribe dancing on all the roofs in town.
But no poetry today. Maybe tomorrow, if thunder beings
roll on through. Maybe the day after, if sunflowers pop
their heads up like curious animals, scenting a new wind.
Today is tears and ashes. Today is funeral dirges, regret
sour as old milk, the clink as we sweep up broken glass.
Cleanse our souls with fire, prayer, but no poetry today.
Probably tomorrow we’ll make a mosaic out of leftovers.
No doubt, tomorrow has cardinals in amongst the cherries,
mockingbirds dropping songs like little tsunamis of love. But
no poetry today; I couldn’t stand the hope in it. Ban all
beautiful beings and things for 24 hours: let us grit
our teeth, eat ugliness like a cure for loss of dear souls.
Poetry is on strike today. Poetry can’t get out of bed.
Poetry wants to close her eyes against knives and death,
bravery sacrificed to the cowardice of small hearts.
You don’t deserve me, Poetry growls. She’s right. We don’t.
Perhaps tomorrow, forgiveness will rise like a sonnet.
Day after tomorrow, I could bear it. But today, goddamn it –
no poetry today.
Deborah A. Miranda