Poetry of Love, Resistance, & Solidarity

Elizabeth came home and went right to bed.lori wriyr

She won’t talk and Dad said leave her alone

and go on down the road and find her coat.

The trees have no leaves since the killing frost.

A yellow waxwing

calls in the cedar. The tips

of his wings are scarlet. He calls,

buzzing and tinny,

and fading as I pass.

Once I think I see the coat,

but it’s an owl feeding, its wings spread wide.

I walk until the road begins to fade

and my hands in front of me

are shadow. I walk even when the moon

lights up and climbs the sky.

I don’t see Elizabeth’s coat,

but I’ve worked out where it is—

inside Brown’s old, leaning barn,

under the ladder that leads to the loft.

I find the coat in the dark and hold it

while the moon circles overhead

and plunges through the holes in the roof.

The old barn murmurs and I wonder

how long

until the whole thing falls.

~ Lori Baker Martin

Lori Baker Martin lives and works in Southeast Kansas where she is currently teaching English at Independence Community College. She’s had work published in Prick of the Spindle, The MacGuffin,  and  The Little Balkans Review, and has been awarded for her work in  The Cincinnati Review and Kansas Voices.  She’s a graduate of Iowa Writer’s Workshop where she was named a Truman Capote Fellow and received the Clark Fischer Ansley Award for Excellence in Fiction. 

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