Poetry of Kansas Here & Now, There & Then

Posts tagged ‘Melissa Sewell’

51. To the Stars Through Difficulty: Melissa Sewell

My residences in this state make a star shape.
I’ve surpassed my sisters at last, deft through divorce
and sorrow, mourning and scrimping and packing.
Can I ever scribble out what I said to you?
We’ll move from the curb into my glass garden house.

No more dreams of death now, love, or waking frozen
next to a phantom weight on the pillow.
Guide my hands holding the wine glass to your mouth.
If there were any possible constellations left,
we’d singe our way back into stardust.

– Melissa Sewell

91. A Feast of Cheap Tacos

In the courtroom where everything
is dissolved she swears to tell
the truth the whole truth about division
of assets, of debt, of child,
of two people too
different to reconcile.

Among gleaming
wooden walls and government seals
and the honorable this
and that, a half-shaded window
gazes outside at cars driving about, to work,
to the store, to appointments.  She remembers

not the day she stood in a field bright with dying sun
wearing a red dress and pearls, the promises
of faith, of trust, of love, of course love,
and the slide of old rings onto trembling fingers.  Not that.

She remembers years
earlier, coming home and sprawling on the bed
with him, with a feast of cheap
tacos, propping pillows around
her growing belly-child. She held his face
in both hands. They were so hungry,
and there was so much food.

– Melissa Sewell

Melissa Sewell lives in Topeka, Kansas, where she slings coffee and scrubs her daughter’s painty fingerprints from the walls. She loves raspberries and being divorced. Her poems have resided in Susquehanna Review, Inscape, seveneightfive magazine, and the upcoming Kansas City Voices.

65. How to Skype

Take the basic craving to watch your beloved in motion –

emptying his pockets onto the bookshelf,

approaching with telltale gait,

thumbing his beard thoughtfully –

and crumple it in your hands

like a troublesome poem.

 

Listen to distant wind chimes and barking dogs, watch

curtains fluttering on ever-lovely West Coast mornings

from your Midwest thunderstorm afternoon.

 

Make like your heart is a rusted bolt,

and pry at it with pliers, with numbed fingers.

Fumble with scissors and kitchen knives

until under the grime, bright silver scrapes

wear the edges away.

Until even the right wrench

could never loose it.

– Melissa Sewell

Melissa Sewell lives in Topeka, Kansas, where she slings coffee and scrubs her daughter’s painty fingerprints from the walls. She loves raspberries and being divorced. Her poems have resided in Susquehanna Review, Inscape, seveneightfive magazine, and the upcoming Kansas City Voices.

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