I Don’t Know How to Love the Broken Day                     by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg 

after Theodore Roethke  

I don’t how how to love the broken day.  
Pandemic losses bloom, die, and return.  
What I thought was stone begins to sway  
like trees that bend until wind has its way  
in storms that clean the world before it turns  
into what helps me love the broken day.  
The blue air shakes and shows me how to stay  
while black-eyed susans thirst for light and learn  
that everything, like stone, begins to sway.  
No wonder when I’m scared, I’m prone to pray  
for ground I thought my thinking heart could earn.  
I don’t how how to love the broken day  
or storied night that has so much to say  
of bats and blossoms, stars and birds airborne  
in time, like stone, that slowly learns to sway.  
The daylight filters through us, ray by ray.  
Like all that blooms and dies while the world burns,  
I don’t how how to love the broken day.  
What I thought was stone begins to sway.  

This poem was previously published in  How Time Moves: New and Selected Poems  

Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Ph.D., the 2009-13Kansas Poet Laureate is the author of 23 books, including Miriam’s Well, a novel; Everyday Magic: A Field Guide to the Mundane and Miraculous, and Following the Curve, poetry. Her previous work includes The Divorce Girl, a novel; Needle in the Bone, a non-fiction book on the Holocaust; The Sky Begins At Your Feet, a bioregional memoir on cancer and community; and six poetry collections, including the award-winning Chasing Weather with photographer Stephen Locke. Founder of Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College, Mirriam-Goldberg also leads writing workshops widely.

Editor-in-Chief Laura Lee Washburn is the Director of Creative Writing at Pittsburg State University in Kansas, and the author of This Good Warm Place: 10th Anniversary Expanded Edition (March Street) and Watching the Contortionists (Palanquin Chapbook Prize).  Her poetry has appeared in such journals asTheNewVerse.News, Carolina Quarterly, Ninth Letter, The Sun, and Valparaiso Review.  Harbor Review’s microchap prize is named in her honor.  


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