Sunday, May 17, 2020

Poem During the Plague: Poem 43

Vera Scott
Vera S. Scott is a poet from the Mid-Western portion of the
United States who happily transplanted to New England
several years back. Mostly published in small presses and
local newspapers, she maintains a blog of her current work
at and has three ebook collections of poetry.


At first it felt like a hole —
one that sheared
straight through the muscle fiber.

Early in the day when Dad was at work
and everyone else had left for school,
my mother and I would walk
to my grandmother’s house.
Sometimes I’d hold her hand.
Sometimes I would run on ahead.
And always there would be the beautiful sound
of those birds. Doves, my mother would say,
morning doves. How glorious, I thought.
God created these softly colored birds
specifically to celebrate the day.
Years later -- when there was no longer
a grandmother to visit, a mother to walk with,
a father to go off to work -- those who 
could always be counted on -- I heard
the grief she actually meant.

Recently, I reached back into my chest,
pushed aside the spongy lungs and the venous
tangle of cords, to search
for that hole torn into my heart.
There’s a scar there now, crisscrossed and pearl-like,
ridged with every name I know for love.

When my fingers stroked its feathers gently,
my heart started to coo.