because while some truths lend themselves to equations, others are best described in verse

You will know because the moon will weep blood

He never wanted. You
will understand
what the trees
are whispering, Japanese
maple leaves falling
by gaslight, branches that shudder
let nothing harm her as they bare
their bark to the night.
Sirens sound, red
as the cherry of a clown’s nose;
there are footsteps
behind the doorways
and bodies, still,
under our feet; ghost
and more-than-ghost of train,
echoes of fathers
gone off decades back,
gone off and never come home.
Let nothing harm her, he said,
and now she hangs
Christmas lights the color
of bruises, mourning
some lost innocence, some lost
season, the world
turned dark as an air raid
blackout except
for the moon, except
for the sirens. Naked,
the trees are whispering
against the river, shadow
on shadowed water:
you will understand. Under the hill,
the breath of a train whistle,
the silence of a grave.
He never wanted to go.
Girls make a game
of kissing by the tunnel mouth,
missing the solace
of their daddies’ knees.
Please let nothing harm her.
No one laughs at clowns anymore.

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7 responses

  1. Deep, sad poem but so gorgeous as always, Joanna!
    L

    October 24, 2016 at 10:25 am

    • Thanks, L! We miss you around the poetry circle!

      October 27, 2016 at 9:22 am

      • I miss you guys so so so much! I wish I could say I have written poetry, but I haven’t written anything since the last poem I showed y’all. I want to come back and just edit, simply to see you all and hear what everyone wrote. I hate when school starts because I’m horrible at balancing things!

        October 27, 2016 at 10:43 am

  2. Only you could make Christmas lights the color of bruises. Love it!
    Also love the kissing by the mouth of a tunnel — such evocative images!

    October 25, 2016 at 11:46 am

    • Lol! What can i say? 🙂

      October 27, 2016 at 9:23 am

  3. Nebraska

    You are an incredible poet!!!

    I especially like these sections:

    “He never wanted. You” (fantastic line break)

    “and now she hangs
    Christmas lights the color
    of bruises”

    “Girls make a game
    of kissing by the tunnel mouth,
    missing the solace
    of their daddies’ knees”

    Wow. I’m blown away by you.

    November 5, 2016 at 11:15 am

    • Thank you for your kind words & feedback. They mean a lot!

      November 7, 2016 at 10:40 am

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