Bio Note: When I returned to teaching in middle age, I found myself tutoring students in Geometry, the one subject I had to repeat in high school. Luckily, writing poetry had taught me how to teach Geometry as an exercise in visualization, and geometry taught me how to be a better poet. My work has been published in Gyroscope Review, Beloit Poetry Review, and Last Call, Chinaski.
Maybe it starts with the kiss, a pressing of self to self, an opening of one to another down to heartwood, open to the elements. The arborist cuts a notch in the trunk, places the new variety in the wound, binds the two until they share every thing, confuse which is which, who is who. Whose leaf? Whose limb? Whose sun?
Originally published in The Lindenwood Review
I hear him say I hate you, I hate you and wonder if I should wake him, but sleep is so dear. I roll over, see him on the edge of the bed, a dark shadow slouched in a dark room so I ask who he was dreaming about. He says “I wasn’t dreaming.” I say, “I heard you.” And he says, “You were dreaming. I’ve been downstairs reading for an hour. I had cinnamon toast.” He leans over to kiss me. His breath is butter in the dark. My lips pick up a crumb from the corner of his mouth. It tastes burnt.
Originally published in Borders and Boundaries (Jewish Currents)
On Becoming Birds
See how thin our old bones are, long batons of ulnae, tibias sharp and delicate. See how the wings of our hips turn to lace, to release us from the gravity of floor and earth. See how the loved ones anchor us in beds with rails, tie us with threads of air and seawater. Stay, they say, even as we prepare to touch the clouds, to break free.
Originally published in Silver Birch Press
©2021 Elaine Mintzer
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