I stumbled upon a stranger’s blog this photo of the soft-
set ricotta heart plated with tea- spoonfuls of rasp-
berry sauce she holds her face close to the plate
expecting no small group for dinner but a deluge
of chalked fingers they mother her a quiet sieve
the spray of primo- cane bruised ruddy at the pith
This, too, my mother says, shall pass. Meaning not what was averted but what will be short- lived. This: a cornucopia of dust and pill- boxes—still-life on the nightstand she comes to swipe off. Replaces it with tinkling ice, straw like a concertina. Something there is that does love a wall, patiently waiting to hear what ails. So when she finds the loophole: she’ll be there, my mother says, lock-stock- and-barrel. I’ll be there with corkscrew and hammer. She leavens her bread so my joints dovetail. She’s practiced the art of closing remarks. In the embankment, she shovels snow.
-- Beth McDermott’s poetry and prose are forthcoming in journals such as So to Speak, Southern Humanities Review, and American Book Review. She received an honorable mention for the 2013 AWP Intro Journals Award and first place in the Regional Mississippi Valley Poetry Contest. Recently, McDermott completed her PhD at the University of Illinois at Chicago; she currently teaches in the English department at the University of St. Francis and live in New Lenox, IL.