by Linda Conroy
How might I conceive the coming day,
pencil in its blueprint on my palm?
Hours spread before me packed with consequence,
the possibility of dropping to contentment’s knee.
I wrestle things unsaid, a hoarding in the register
I keep of other’s lives, the measure and regret.
A scaffold like a skull to hold the thoughts
that flee as fast as wind can steal the leaves,
like a book left open in the rain; pages wrinkle,
rip and fall before their ambiguities are read.
Am I living in an attic room, seeing through a window,
where sun still shines next door, but here it’s gray?
A single bead within the chain, a trinket, not about to hold
my weight or what is locked within the prison of my skin.
Night’s clock is counting now, and though I ruminate
and try to sleep, the morning comes, a blue jay, posing as itself.
I listen in this lofty place for what comes next
as dust motes float above my head, the rafters
a shy witness, in a space imagined full of prayer
but it’s no use. Vision smudges on the wall
of my belief. I flounder at the borrowed edge
of shame. Windows quiver and blow shut.
So sit beside me in the chair, this re-thought day,
this evening of short time, and whisper shards
of disremembered truth into my doubtful ear.
LINDA CONROY is a retired social worker who believes that poetry serves to honor the complexity and simplicity of human nature. Her poetry has recently appeared or in forthcoming in Shot Glass, Third Wednesday, The Penwood Review, and The Poetry Box, among others.
Photo: “Washed-up Wisdom” by alexis mire