Bright Objects by Night
Richard Boada

There needs to be a table in his empty kitchen, 
a stolid mahogany, color of cigar, a place to wait for spring. 

The kitchen window, the threshold of his language, the portal
likely to shift thought to verbalization, remains shut. 

This is the enchantment, the sublimation of bird chatter into wind,
a chalky half-life of Mississippi woodpeckers and longleaf pines,

cicadas dazzling underground, a wasp that has trapped a honeybee
in the womb of a rose, a raceme of white flowers that sprouts along

the hedge of the neighbor’s garden.  The young wife in hospital scrubs
tracks footprints through the house and into the empty kitchen. 

When she is gone, he’ll dream of medical waste: infected needles
and bruise colored bandages covered with spores and fungus. 

But for now, they’ll march together through the apartment, and she’ll sop
the evidence of her labor with a wet towel. 

Originally appeared in The Error of Nostalgia and Jabberwock Review, 2012

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