by Twila Newey
Fall had just turned cold the year I hung over you—speechless and intent— death making an end of all my exquisite preparations—words stolen from my mouth. Here, when I speak, only fireflies fly out. Sultry and opaque I slipped through the haze between worlds that postcard you kept writing me Joy was to be endured as well as sorrow like a fountain vanishing the body flows for a little while. A risk to return as mist rising in another century, another shoreline, I trusted your impulsive hospitality What else could I do but try to speak again of light— of desire—maybe shake us both free of father’s tongue. I’m telling you it was a mistake to weigh my pockets down with stones and wander into water. ____
Note: Italicized lines are from Virginia Woolf’s “Moments of Being.”
Twila Newey lives and writes at the confluence of poetry, local ecology, motherhood, and the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers in Northern California. You can find recent work at Green Mountains Review, About Place Journal, and Radar Poetry.