Foreword Reviews

Sidney E. Smith

Editor’s Note: This poem by Cindy Hunter Morgan is being presented as part of our special focus on poetry during #PoetryMonth in April. Please read our introduction to the series.

St. Clair River

He was at the wheel of the Smith
that day in Port Huron
when the bow got caught in the current,
pushing it into the path

of a downbound steamer.
A few weeks later,
he heard a barber speak of guilt
as though it were an insect.

Endless stridulation, he thought,
as the barber tilted the razor
away from the lump near his throat.
That summer was full of unsteerable days

stitched together with the relentless rasp
of insects.
He saw in the bodies of brown field crickets
the hulls of tiny ships

and heard in their rubbing body parts
the ceaseless grind of metal on metal.
He spent nights on his porch drinking Stroh’s,
trying to steer the sounds of insects

away from the home where his son slept
beneath deep blue blankets,
and where his wife drifted in cool sheets,
her hair fanned around her

as though underwater.
He thought everything was sinkable,
and never heard the music
of what was still afloat.

Reprinted with permission from Harborless by Cindy Hunter Morgan, Wayne State University Press © 2017.

Foreword Reviews

Load Next Article