Monday, September 29, 2008


we spent the weekend away at a rainy/grey poetry festival. Today is 2 weeks since we lost the baby. I have hours of almost ok-ness, and then overwhelming sadness.

Here is today's poem:

summer’s leavings

the flour is webbed and so is the almond meal
cayenne reveals one wriggling worm, dropped
into the pan of sizzling potatoes and removed
with a quick flick of the fingernail

the last tomatoes are rotting in the fridge
pressed close to clear drawers, they soften and sour
the yogurt has molded a green airy moss

crickets gather in corners
in each room’s pretend night,
sing and mate
moths dot the doors of the cupboard
make the inside air a wild thing
they die in grey smears and dust
we no longer feel guilty, routinely
wash our fingers clear and return to our day

the new fridge leaks water, a stream
every other day that follows the slant
of our sloped floor, small breaks
in the screen allow mosquitoes and flies in
we tape the mistakes we find, and know
there are others, unseen

and so our house creaks back to a wooded
field, though we struggle, live with daily removal
sweep cricket eggs from the corner, discard the box of nuts

honey grows golden in the jar, crystal edged
we freeze everything we remember to
and put faith in sealed jars that sometimes work

I take down the pictures of what was growing
for a time, in me, from you
I don’t know where to put them
leave only that photo of the two of us
with that hope between us, in our eyes and slight smiles

some days, I hate that picture, though we are almost beautiful
in that happy time, under trees
with family, unseen, all around us

all the flowering herbs of summer
make a muddy water in their jar, a swampy thing

the zucchini rots at one end, I cut the mold away
grate the still firm middle
scoop flour from the middle and examine for worms
also the meal, and the sugar
eyes search for each invader
praise the fresh egg and the untainted vanilla
take spoon, measure and stir

wait some time, let the oven do its one job
containment and release, the rush of flame
of the heated air, the alchemy of our everyday lives
ignore the neglected plant for one more day
let it go, leaves dropped more than leaves held

we are losing it all, I feel right now, but make something anyway
today’s small gift of muffins, spiced as I know you like them
what I can stir together from summer’s leavings


  1. Wow, whew, thank you, "the alchemy of our everyday lives". Thank you, your poetry gives your pain and sadness a voice. Take care, Poppy.

  2. I am still so very sad for you and Mr. Poppy. I think of you often.


  3. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! I love that poem. How horrible it's origin, but how captivating the images and story are!

  4. Very evocative... great images!

    It made me just a little bit happy to know that you were making muffins by the end of it. :]

  5. I have left the photos of my embryos sitting on the second bedroom dresser. I can't bring myself to remove it yet.

    I believe the wounds always remain but I hope time will help you heal. Thinking of you.

  6. You are a beautiful writes, poppy. This is my favorite stanza, for some reason:

    honey grows golden in the jar, crystal edged
    we freeze everything we remember to
    and put faith in sealed jars that sometimes work

    Thank you for sharing your innermost thought with us.

  7. You are a very gifted poet, Poppy. I don't read or enjoy poetry much, but your poem was moving and descriptive. I hope it helps get you through the sadness in some way.