Today's poem is by Malinda Markham

Just Past this Road Lives a Figure Imprisoned in a Tower

Each moment starts again, each blade of grass
Stands apart from the rest.
From close enough, it's hard to believe

Each green is a not a continent.
People harbor warmth in ways that almost
Make them sing. There are few

Words to speak about distance
Enough. Do you wake at night shaking?
Do you want to, but sit very still

Instead? Night places cold palms
Over all the eyes of flowers.
There is nothing wrong

With this stillness, with what it clothes
And uncovers again. Your room
Is a bowl I can break apart

And reassemble. A smaller hollow nests inside,
And inside the throat, hollower still.
This road measures my steps. From here,

Leaves framing your window
Could be anything at all. Six thousand words,
Their order obscured. How many times

People set out to reach you.
Against cold air, I can almost
See your breath. I cannot imagine your ribs.

Copyright © 2009 Malinda Markham All rights reserved
from Having Cut the Sparrow's Heart
Western Michigan University Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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