Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2021  Vol. 20  No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
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Missing Glossary

Autumn, always. The buzz
by which we know the katydid and the fly.

Coral accumulating its slow colonies, the flax
darting bluely through the meadow.

Every evening, the valley is a V
filled with amethyst heat. I was once full of you—

girl who will someday be ghost,
heart that hurts and hurts—

I was once an unscarred peach. But terror
jigsawed my edges until I was sticky as burdock

kernels, clinging to the burlap
legs of every passing catastrophe. Moons ago,

magnolias and jasmine meant swoon,
not imagine a life without them.

Orange weavers didn’t always trail
plumes of their own vanishing through the dusk.

Q is for quiet rooms swelling into disquiet. J
reminds me that by June, the year is already hemi-

sphered, a deflating balloon. My own March
trills somewhere in the field behind me, its song

unraveling. Even you are made of
vanishing, new as you are:

waves of your cells have already died,
xeroxed themselves, and died again. Such magic

yields fewer and fewer miracles. I’ll miss the lamb,
zealously. You. The autumn-blooming sweet pea.  

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