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Kathryn Rantala: Three Poems
Morning Report | Impossibility of Leaving | In the Thicket

Morning Report

The moon is 96% illuminated,
a waxing gibbous;
that is,
marked by convexity
and seen with more than half
but not all of its apparent disk.

Not all of this apparent day
is illuminated.
The trees are dulled wet,
burrows roll with sleep,
fish hold low, refusing food,
mud the only next step.

Your car this morning
flicked its near end with
curls of exhaust;
an impatient ride.
96% sure you will not
come back to my bed,
I roll to the colder side—
which is more than half
but not all.
A patent null in me
dims and rises.

Impossibility of Leaving

and the way ooze sidles up a bank,
citizen of a blind city.
As if soaring had to do
with flight; or evolution, the
resolution of your staggering heart.

Shifts for decision and fingers of abandoned lives
seen as they are,
lonely as infant shrews.
You try not to hurt them,
winding inside the inadequate cape of
Dark Protector.

That you turn invisible
does not alarm them, nor you
nor the feel of hands in your mind—
this thing you've idly allowed,
mistaking prods in the folds
for a kind of advancing life.

In The Thicket

And there you fly,
into the thick of it,
a flash of steel-blue belly
holding together a small bird.

Most of what I see is memory
by the time I know it,
a twitch of one branch
moving another.

I turn to talk about
your long, invisible visit,
though by then
you are bird-elsewhere,
preparing to land.

I bring a comforter
close to my neck, stiffen.
You rest in a windy tree,
your eyes closed,
your fast heart easy,
your scoping feathers
settling with each other
one by one.

Poet's Biography:
  Kathryn Rantala's work has recently appeared in The Iowa Review Web, Archipelago, elimae, Poems Niederngasse, 5_trope, Slow Trains (Postcards) and is upcoming in The New Orleans Review, Oyster Boy Review and Locus Novus. She was a 2003 reader for the William Stafford Prize.

© 1999 - 2003, by the poets featured herein.