Diffused like the blur of sun through clouds, you’re
dazzling but indeterminate.
You imbue the place. On the ash-
colored slats that side the abandoned
shed, you sprawl. In the spell
of maple limbs, sky writing
V’s and bent T’s,
in the tattered leaves,
out at the tooth, holdovers from the fall,
you’re suspended like weather.
How the girl vanished from her bed,
the trashed clothes spread on the floor,
left you emptied
like the flaccid wind-sock of soul.
Now the places she abandoned
fill with what you disclose, the mourning ash
and pearl of late winter snow.
How little you are on your own.
Even the ancient tortoise in the creek,
its shell mistaken, if I don’t
watch my step, for a stone,
bears your white sign.
Mary Moore's poetry is forthcoming in Birmingham Poetry Review and has appeared recently in Santa Fe Review, Birmingham Poetry Review 25th Anniversary Issue, Nimrod’s 2011 Awards Issue (finalist), Sow’s Ear Review (finalist in 2012 contest), 10 x 3, Connotation Press (January 2013), Evolutionary Review, Cavalier Literary Couture, American Poetry Journal, 2riverview, Prairie Schooner. Earlier credits include Kestrel, Sow's Ear Review, Poetry, Field, New Letters (awards issue), Nimrod, Prairie Schooner, Negative Capability. Her collection, The Book of Snow, from Cleveland State appeared in 1997. She teaches Renaissance literature emphasizing gender issues and poetry at Marshall University.