Laurie Klein

Orphans
by Laurie Klein

At the battered table, streaked with paint
like time-lapse stars, caught in their courses,
we lean in. A spindle creaks.
Oxidized fan blades
spin above the sad white plate
and stir the perfume of apples, sliced open.
One human eclipse, it seems,
calls forth another: Pain spills.

We drink too much tea,
and rungs underfoot, loose in their joints,
do not steady the feet. Chills corner
wool sweaters, roughen the snags
like a tale abandoned, mid-sleeve.

If we were to paint inertia, we’d need
a canvas, cratered, like that lesser moon
in Jupiter’s shadow. Please,
speak softly about our parents,
even pray aloud, but know that inwardly,
we orbit a black hole, try to somehow
manage what cannot be borne.
 

Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 18, Issue 1.

Laurie KleinLaurie Klein’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Southern Review, New Letters, Ascent, Terrain, MAR, Potomac Review, and other journals. She has a prize-winning chapbook, Bodies of Water, Bodies of Flesh, and her first collection, Where the Sky Opens, a Partial Cosmography, has been selected for the Poeima Poetry Series.

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