BellaOnline Literary Review
Drone Fly by Mark Berkery


A Poem Is

Joy Carter

A poem is me, rubbish bin angel.
A china doll made of cast off broken things.
The jam jar whose lid would never open.
The brandy bottle you dropped down the stairs
That night you were too tipsy to stand
The glass shattering out and down
A wave crashing against sharp rocks
Of flat faced unforgiving wood.
The baby teeth your mother meant to save
But lost.

One time my mother wrote me a letter.
Each word a well meant lie
Bringing tears to my eyes
Shorter than any other.
Five lines.
Five lies.
I folded up the letter
Pressed it between the pages
Of a big, dry leather book I knew
No one would read but me
Saving it for one day when Iíd need a pretty lie
More than the bittersweet taste
Of truth on my tongue.

A poem is the raw, bloody hunk of meat
I cut from my own chest.
Slapping it down on the blank page,
The bloody splatter that remains,
The song I sung with tears running down my cheeks
Voice wavering, hoarse from sobs
I prayed no one could hear
And the pretty things I hide
So the world canít spoil their beauty,
The letter from my mother
Hidden in a leather bound book
No one else will ever read,
That is poetry too.

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Summer Solstice 2012 Table of Contents