by Phyllis Bertoni Krosinsky
(Click image for larger view)
By Bertha Rogers
The electronic clock chirps.
The sun, summoned, enters, broadcasts morning.
Cats shatter dishes in the kitchen;
plates cleave heavy air, silver sluices after.
Hide your face, breathe back slumber.
I will not
not this hour
I will remain
Just before daybreak we go slack,
less permanent than the bird,
the cat’s curled claw; spectral dwellers
in rooms that, decorated to suit,
Chairs and tables, owned goods,
don’t permit escape, their legs and hard arms.
Books lock thought, they do not release.
Walls intimate safety
(note how exact, how precisely joints align)
but outside trees war against corners,
branches vex windowpanes.
We arrive by subtraction,
by stages move to diminished quarters.
Companions defy tenure.
Think of all that cannot be said,
heart against teeth. Anticipate descent,
the voice that does not falter:
I am just ahead of you,
the narrowest room.
Previously published in the Speaking the Words Anthology
See Bertha Rogers' poetry and art at http://www.bertharogers.com