Four Flights Up
Here, from the room where I have been
consoling my body, the city is a fat candle
with so many wicks. I can imagine a fire
down there if you are not all careful
when you move about. In my room,
I have already burned things.
You have spread from the heart
and soon I predict I will be fully engulfed.
I admit, I do not feel wholly bound
to this daughterhood. It is tiring
being upset by my window. In the air
today there is a crane surviving a horrible wind.
There is a drawing I made of you
avoiding the city. Surely you made maps
in your travel, but aren't you able
to see me up here?
A little town has crept into me--
a sunken textile mill, orchard sighs,
a tossed petticoat in the reeds by Lake Waushacum.
Tomorrow I will bring you pears, my hands,
whatever you need. My mother says farmers keep
dying from their wives. I have requested milk
and blankets from the neighbors. I was waiting
for word. It is getting sour here.
Everything is hotter than my mouth and the night
is sick with mustard clouds. You did this.
You said there were animals to tend to.
I had loved your acres, your weakness for this
hamlet. We will call this life bruised.
My head is to the floor and all I can hear is disaster.
Beth Woodcome was raised in the small town of Sterling, Massachusetts and now resides in Brookline, Massachusetts. She has a fondness for beautiful places.