The tough, rolled-up shirtsleeves, diesel fumes, and rural sensibility of Maine’s fishing villages separate Rosa Lane’s poetry from other super-talented, MFA-bearing poets from Sarah Lawrence College. No, effete is not a word to describe her. A practicing architect, Lane’s work has appeared in New South, Ploughshares, Crab Orchard Review, and other places.
A wreck of weeds washes up pale
sea glass at the deck’s edge.
Wild blooms scribble across the back-
field, then skim the top fringes
of meadow, afloat in this freak summer
we could not fathom at first.
June began with our father’s boat
pocked with barnacles, laid keel up,
overturned by a cancer undetected, then
the rash of salmon that appeared
in a sunset across his chest and brooded
in his lungs that hung on a plastic line—
a pump of oxygen constantly not enough.
The three of us: sunflowers planted
around his bed, our heads tracking
every move of our father’s fall. Windows
pull to the east, each morning
a golden ratio of the day before.
His face half-hidden under the wing
of his arm, his body disappearing,
his future sliding back just ahead of us.
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