Wick Inside Flame: A Poem

Wick Inside Flame

Later, the seahorse,

Long-snouted and swooned

Into its green corset of glass,

Dangled from a nail

In our kitchen window,

And when the sun

Eclipsed the horizon,

It pinked.

It had been what we’d taken for ourselves,

From a room of fragile things,

In a shop on the river on a day

When again it was the three of us,

And we were accumulating time

For after this.

We’d walked the canal first,

Behind the poet’s house. Walked

Lambertville and the bridge

Above the Delaware,

And we’d called the white geese

Swans, for the romance of it,

And leaned to catch a feather,

And said to each other,

Or I said to you,

I remember snowdrops.

Last night, washing my hands

Of the lavender I had planted

And watching the seahorse pink

Above the sink, I stole this image

Of ourselves from the day we had

Squandered so that we might be saved:

You brushing my hair from my face

For a kiss, our son too tall to tame.

“When the Children have Gone to Bed,” Carl Larsson (1895, Sweden).

“When the Children have Gone to Bed,” Carl Larsson (1895, Sweden).

This is the second of five poems shared specifically with Commonplace Living’s readers written by award winning author Beth Kephart.

beth kephart.jpg

Beth Kephart

wrote poems before she wrote books. Then she wrote poems while writing books. Now she writes poems because they force her to find and say the one singular thing that she still hopes to find a way to say. Her essays, books, teaching, and thoughts can be found at bethkephartbooks.com