CURATED BY LISA A. FLOWERS
MY MOTHER IN
My mother in grass green
my mother in scarlet
an eel climbs out of our neighborhood
a few hours after all the mud
my mother in red that turned black under mercury
my mother in ragweed
a few houses toward Boston
tidal swamp of unclutched eggs
my mother in a dress the color of lawnmowers
my mother in black leaving the grass
an eel climbs out of our backyard
she gets an ocean in her head
my mother in leaf mold
my mother in a dress the color of drains
too thick and black for a snake
she gets a notion of the sea
my mother in lawn clippings
my mother in a dress the color of landfill
on a day when no one told the truth
my mother in grass green.
Can you tell which chicken laid which egg?
I’m an ink spill
I’m critical thinking
where time machines leave off
huge moons take over
I’m a cracked canoe
I’m an unpressurized cabin
summer’s theme calcium carbonate
I’m a collection of lidded jars
I’m a shot of smoked vodka
rows of eggs in colors like freshwater pearls
I’m a drop in skin temperature
If a baby were left on your doorstep in a basket, what would you do?
in your backyard forest
deer begin to gather
If a baby were left on your doorstep walled in bricks, what would you do?
antlers hung with prayer flags
even your kitchen scares you
If the baby were a bird bricked into an artificial egg, what would you do then?
footsteps pace corner to corner
you slip in liquid
If contents tell one story and containers tell another, which do you believe?
allegiance mutates to feral
wind carries off what isn’t tied down
NOT EXTINCT MEANS MEAN
I’m deserting in shades of orange
(future ocean forks around a tree)
take my leave on gold aspen spectrum
slam into myself red shift via return
high tide keeps overwhelming the airstrip
I shouldn’t have come near your weather
hybrid of seawater and lava
you may be sunrise there’s no telling your tradeoff wind
singlehanded rolling islands back into volcanoes
think you’re whelp of density you can conjure basalt from cookie dough?
practice walking mazes the color way
mythic footfall rips each step from underfoot
maze holds orange in all its shades
orangemost at point central
from red prime to yellow prime
limited spectrum low-frequency roar
start yellow come out red
reverse in tangerine heartland
in the wake of a storm you didn’t notice
bottom-feeders we cut our feet on obsidian.
Anne-Adele Wight is the author of Sidestep Catapult, Opera House Arterial, and The Age of Greenhouses, all from BlazeVox. she lives in Philadelphia with her husband and cats, and curates the monthly Jubilant Thicket Poetry Series.