Friday, June 14, 2013

Hannah Stephenson: "First Things First"

Do the first things first,
those things embedded with order
and priority. The urgent things,
the things swirling in your solar plexus
and elbowing you in the heart.

First things first, the things
from which other things spring.
The initial movement, the impulse
to move, the discomfort that triggers
a flicker in your nerves.

First things come first.
You wake, you lift your eyelids,
perform subconscious diagnostics.
What do you need today, you ask
yourself, watching the walls.

First things first, you trust
that by starting the day’s processes,
you will go where you need to.
Even the eighth thing you do
can be the first, even the nineteenth thing.

"First Things First" by Hannah Stephenson, from In the Kettle, the Shriek, scheduled for publication in October, 2013, by Gold Wake Press.

Image credit: "Early to Bed, Early to Rise," giclée print by William Donahey.

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