She’s my stars strung bone to bone.
Weather walking east to west.
Everything the gods know –
She’s the cross clasped to the breast of night.
The smudge smoke for appeasing saints.
The stone I sleep and dream upon,
and when I wake
she’s the rain.
Still I drove a dozen dawns
to seek counsel on the mountain.
Climbed until my hands were raw
just to hear a wise one say,
“Be still and know that I am dog –
stars beyond your ken and counting.
Worlds beget more worlds,
but some truths never change.
The only cure for drought
I want to be someone else.
No, something else.
A big-eyed owl with wet silver wings
and talons that can pluck out an eye.
I want to nest up in the rafters
of that Deep Deuce jazz club,
the one that opens late and closes early.
I want to hoot when the horns move me,
and screech when I’m feeling the swing.
And, when I’m flying low with a contact high
and spy the Monday morning mouse,
I want to whisper,
“You’ve slept a dozen deaths.
Welcome to the resurrection.”
Hive up high –
aerie on my knee.
Can’t hatch honey,
so I set the feathers free.
If We Had
If we had evenings
in companionable silence;
if we had nights
of discarded lace;
if we had mornings
as others have mornings,
of the poetry erased.
Kelli Simpson is the co-author of two poetry collections: Gemini / Scorpio / Capricornand Three Note Howl: The Wild Hunt. Her poems have most recently appeared in Sugar Mule. She lives in Norman, Oklahoma, where she mothers, gardens, and treats herself to chocolate as often as possible. You can find her at http://www.mamaneedsshoes.blogspot.com.