Maybe it is the shriveled spiders,
looking like compost flakes on the rug that tell me,
these beasts were fornicating and feasting
more than I. Maybe it is the scraping sound
of sow-bug shells, sucked up and spinning
in the vacuum I employ that reminds me
of the ladybug carapaces, dozens
scattered on my dining table, that greeted me
years ago. Then, my mother had been dead
less than a day and I was not there to feed her
ice chips, soothe rattle and wheeze, or shroud
the carcass of her last breath. My memory opens
like a slash of flesh—I am the same age now
as she was then.
Fogging my reflection
in the picture window I watch evening
hug the swelling redbud limbs
as bats drain the air of insects.
But I am not here to grieve.
I want to know about the living
to come. How to navigate by clouds.
How the tree grows around a nail
pounded into it.
Suzanne Edison is the author of The Moth Eaten World (Finishing Line Press). Her poetry can be found in Bullets into Bells (online), JAMA, What Rough Beast, Bombay Gin, The Naugatuck River Review, The Ekphrastic Review, Spillway, and The Examined Life Journal, as well as in the anthologies Face to Face: Women Writers on Faith, Mysticism and Awakening (ed. Joy Harjo & Brenda Peterson, Farrar, Strauss & Giroux) and The Healing Art of Writing, Volume One.