Keepers: A Poem

I've had a super busy time of it this past few weeks, and poetry feels far away at the moment. I know it's just a matter of being able to give it some time and attention, to get back into flow.

Things have settled and are returning to “normal' (whatever that is around here).

In the meantime, while waiting to be inspired by a new poem for you, I went to the archives to dig out an old one. It's the title poem of my collection Keepers and I realized I've never published it here on my blog before, so I figure it may be new to many of you.

I hope it hits a spot for you.

And I'll have a spanking, brand-new poem for patrons next Sunday.



I'm taking out the trash,
throwing away old notes,
worn thoughts and images.

A woman's bare back
a little scratched,
half-broken. A man
with an eagle on his hand,
a belly full of complaint.
An empty house
on an abandoned island,
darkening down.

Unremarkable repeats.
I won't create anything
like that any more.

Now I want to go where
a woman is old enough
to have the head
of a lioness.
Where a man knows
how to be his own cub.
Where two beings—
neither fish nor fowl—
can swim together
in or out of the tide,
beyond the weir,
buoyed by the swell
of their difference.

It has taken me time
to see like this.

The repeats whisper
notes on their way
to the trash.

I shall keep
this poem.

You can purchase Keepers here.

Orna Ross


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