Spells / Poems
Black Widow Window
Just off the edge
of the open bathroom window,
eight glistening legs walk down,
delicate as the flakes of soap
floating in my bathwater,
quiet as this space when I close
the door and expect no guests
to enter except
now there are eight glistening legs
entering my field of vision,
spinning a web,and revealing
a red hour glass.
What a venomous beauty
amidst my protected privacy.
She winds her web round corners.
Don't lay your eggs here!
But who am I to tell her she can't.
She's found a private space
with wood, crevices, darkness, and open air.
I lean in. She draws back.
I fear her.
She's made the most intimate place
I wonder at her.
Love Poem for a Friend
I wake when she wakes
in another room. Her lamp switches on.
She's cautious not to disturb my morning
solitude. She doesn't know that I'm listening
to her footsteps approach the pot of coffee, thinking
that sound is the first joy of my day—
not the coffee
pot gurgling water through a filter, though I do love that,
but that's not the sound
that brings me the first feeling of joy.
No, it's her
footsteps vibrating through the wooden floors.
I walk into the kitchen.
She's blocking the silverware drawer
as she pours milk into her drink.
She apologizes. Don't say sorry, I want to say,
I love you
but I don't say that. I hold it off
for when the utterance of "love" might make her smile.
There's a storm inside of her today.
She's wrapping a blanket around
her shoulders. She's sheltering her head from the rain,
thunder, maybe even lightning. I hear lightning
in the walls. The house hums with electricity
when she walks around, barefoot, trying to find
a book she won't read today,
but will look at and think about. She will say, I didn't read enough.
She will feel it isn't enough. But it is. It is enough.
I watch her with my ears.
Tomorrow we may switch positions.
I may feel sorrow like a storm,
or maybe sorrow like a desert—desolate and bare.
I may curl back into bed in the early afternoon and think
it's too early for me to do this, to sleep, to dream during the day.
She will tell me it's not. It's not too early. It's time.
She watches me with her ears,
hears me hum and beat my wings heavily against the day.
She reads a book called "When Women Were Birds."
I imagine us humming, zipping around each other
in the cycles we create, finding flowers,
full, sometimes empty of nectar.
We move rapidly, beating our wings
through whatever weather exists
in our spiraling, intelligent minds, then
there will be a moment later, there is always a moment, when
we stop, hover in space and