Friday, June 21, 2013

Abigail Carroll: "In Gratitude"

For h, tiny fire
     in the hollow of the throat,
          opener of every hey

hi, how are you,
     hello; chums with c,
          with t, shy lover of s;

there and not
     there—never seen,
          hardly heard, yet

real as air
     fluttering the oak,
          holding up the hawk;

the sound
     of a yawn, of sleep, of heat,
          a match, its quivering

orange flame
     turning wood into light,
          light into breath;

the sound
     of stars if stars
          could be heard, perhaps

the sound
     of space; life speaking life:
          warm air endowed

to hard clay—
     a heart, hurt,
          a desire to be healed—

the work
     of bees stuck in the nubs
          of hollyhocks

and columbine, time
     to the extent that time
          is light, is bright

as the match,
     the flame of the sun,
          real as the muffled hush

of sleep,
     the fluttering oak,
          the bee, the silent oh

in the throat
     when a hand is laid
          upon the shoulder;

     the body’s empty cry
          for filling, for loving,

for knowing
     the intimacy of breath,
          of half-breathed words

fragile as the stars:
     hollow, hush,

"In Gratitude" by Abigail Carroll. No other bibliographic information available. 

Photography credit: "Fire Letter H," by RAStudio (originally color).


1 comment :

  1. I found a web page on the poet: The biography is more recent than your posting of this poem. From (which lists her books and places she's been published): Carroll is a poet and author who holds a PhD in American Studies from Boston University, where she has taught history and writing. She makes her home in Vermont, where she serves as pastor of arts and spiritual formation at Church at the Well.


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