you are in the diode archives v5n3



At my Mother’s House, October of her 88th Year

Look at the light. Look between the trees
           where branches overlap. Stippled
                      green and yellow, foliage gleams

a few seconds silver. Across the road,
           where the first house stood,
                      burnished orange has blasted
one side of a conical maple. The beech is flying
           its cadmium flags, that will cling
                      all winter. Hemlocks sway.                

Staghorn sumac browned by frost,
           holds its furry seeds teetering
                       at the edge of over-ripe.

In through this raised bedroom window,
           a breeze wanders away from its mother
                      the wind, which belongs nowhere.

Its warm gusts have rushed off the great lake,
           whirling a magnificent cape,
                      undulating above lively marshes,

tilted between ocher and bronze,
           sliding down the vertical blue.
                      Undeterred, it enters this bedroom,

ruffles blank pages, awakens
           summer’s somnolent flies, stirs
                      eddies of dust, each mote

 a memory untethered, drifting
           in a ray of variegated light,
                      that sweeps over me, half-asleep,

half-covered, nerve endings alive,
           restless and unwilling to settle
                      into the comfortable bed.  


Roselyn Elliott is the author of three poetry chapbooks: The Separation of Kin (Blueline—SUNY Potsdam 2006 ), At the Center (Finishing Line Press 2008), and Animals Usher Us to Grace (Finishing Line Press 2011).  Her essays and poems have appeared in The Florida Review, New Letters, Harpur Palate, and many other publications. She holds an MFA in poetry from Virginia Commonwealth University and teaches writing at WriterHouse in Charlottesville, Virginia.