Lifting
by Laurie Zimmerman

It’s like when you see a child in an
oversized jacket

standing at a light, sucking her lip,
waiting for the traffic

to pass and in one glance you’ve taken in
her history—

she’s forgotten oranges at the store,
found a coin

in the bottom of her torn pocket and she’s
wrestling it

from the coat lining, looking as if she’s
doing nothing,

just waiting for the light.

It’s when you know for sure, the night’s
having already claimed

you long enough and there was no dawn
with its bright rain

that grandeur is everywhere, even in
your misbegotten

wish for love. It’s even about grief marrying
someone else’s

sadness, the whole world bursting and still
it has nothing

to do with the shiny currencies
of happiness.

In the dark you can begin

to feel yourself lean in like a hand might
tack toward what is there

even if what’s there is all that you don’t want.
It loosens

around you then like a wind’s sudden arrival
releasing the trees

for a moment reveals the opening
you can walk through.
 

Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 17, Issue 4.

Laurie-ZimmermanLaurie Zimmerman is the author of the poetry collection Bright Exit (Quercus Review Press, 2014). Her work has appeared in New Letters, Poet Lore, Orion, Paterson Literary Review, and has won the River Styx prize, the New Letters Award, and a Pushcart nomination. She is former poetry editor at Radix Magazine, Berkeley, and she teaches at Proctor Academy in New Hampshire.

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