Tuesday, October 27, 2009

When a Friend Dies

When a friend dies
By Marge Piercy
When a friend dies the salmon run no fatter.

The wheat harvest will feed no more bellies.

Nothing is won by endurance but endurance.

A hunger sucks at the mind

for gone color after the last bronze

chrysanthemum is withered by frost.

A hunger drains the day,

a homely sore gap

after a tooth is pulled,

a red giant gone nova,

an empty place in the sky

sliding down the arch

after Orion in night as wide

as a sleepless staring eye.

When pain and fatigue wrestle

fatigue wins. The eye shuts.

Then the pain rises again at dawn.

At first you can stare at it,

Then it blinds you.

Friday, October 09, 2009


On the Ice

Walking on ice so thin
I can see the cracked pebbles
On the bottom
Beneath this delicate sheen
Glinting with menace
Waiting for my frail
Moment of weakness
I know not what awaits
In your heart, in your secrets
Still I edge out
From the shore
Remembering the shock
Once I crashed through
I hold my breath
Is this false hope?
Am I lost or found?
All of my yesterdays
Fade in one word
From your lips
All the tears dry
All the empty nights
Fade away
Is that a crack that I see?
On the ice ahead
Or the path away from here