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Lyn Lifshin: A Raven Flies Through Moonlight
Part of the PoetryCircle Showcase series.
  • A raven flies through moonlight

    Lately, I dread the sky lightening,
    the black nothingness of furniture,
    emerging outlines. I want the night
    to go on forever, empty as willows
    the deer have gone past. Tell me
    you don’t have nights any light is
    an intrusion, a burglar? Don’t tell
    me you haven’t, even in a lover’s
    arms, dreaded to leave the stasis
    of lying together, listen to the
    other’s heart beat, breath. The old
    story: we are alive



    On the island
    of twigs, the heron
    still as some
    hieroglyph. Pale
    as driftwood.
    You asked if I still
    thought you
    funny, said if you
    didn't, it
    wouldn't work.
    You seemed
    so sad, lined
    I was about to say
    yes but when I
    turned to you
    you were gone


    Could have gone

    Foot prints—you can't
    tell which direction
    they are going. Does
    my cat see images
    when she whimpers
    in dreams in her sleep?
    Did something inside
    the pale gray egg
    that fell before me on
    the lap circling the
    pond long to become
    a feathery oval flying and
    somehow knew it
    wouldn't be?



    At 88.4 lbs
    I weigh less than
    my mother in
    her last days
    when she
    sighed that now
    she could eat
    she wanted
You, JesseHaydnHyde, Dave Rendle and 8 others like this.
  1. "A raven flies through moonlight" will remain one of my favorite poems for as long as I live.
  2. Leecrowell
    This reminds me of nursing home residents so frail in their nineties on restricted diets and I think just give them whatever the hell they want.
  3. Kevin James
    Probably one of the most beautiful things I've read in a long time.

    Incredible and devastating.
    JesseHaydnHyde likes this.
  4. brendan christopher
    nice little set, here.  i especially liked "Could Have Gone."  Is there a typo or line missing here?  Couldn't understand this:

    You seemed
    so sad, lined
    I was about to say
    JesseHaydnHyde likes this.
  5. TrishSaunders
    I didn't think I would like anything more than "forced buds" but then I read these.
    I admire your enjambment, as well.
    Nice curating, Jay.
  6. Jenn Zed
    Fine writing that displays beautiful control and style.

    Very good.
    JesseHaydnHyde likes this.