a bisque light hovers.
We speak of our separate
grandparents, how they appeared
in the mundane grain of life,
tapping the wall to find a light switch,
folding softened sheets of the bed
they made for us—your ancestor,
my ancestor, their simple acts.
After love, before parting, our
breath released as one apparition,
our conjoined air accepting the transfer
of time and its diminishment,
we’re spent, we’re tired, we follow
any direction the conversation takes.
And those people from whom
we descend—ghosts riding
ghosts, alike but unknown
to each other, the plank road
they traveled or the wooden
turnstile passed through.
How we’ve held them in our minds
our whole lives: pocket watch,
handkerchief, coal stove,
two grey citizens glimpsed
those mornings on what
would each be their last bed.
~ Catherine Anderson
Catherine Anderson’s most recent poetry collection is Woman with a Gambling Mania (Mayapple Press). She is a Pushcart Prize winner (November 2017). Her poems have appeared in the I-70 Review, the Southern Review and others. She lives in Kansas City where she works with area refugee communities.
Guest Editor Maril Crabtree holds B.A, M.A., and J.D. degrees from the University of Kansas and has taught French, English, therapeutic writing, yoga, and sustainable living. Her poetry, short stories, and essays have been published in numerous journals, along with three chapbooks. Her full-length collection, Fireflies in the Gathering Dark, will be published in August, 2017.