★ ★ ★ ★


Image by Loren Gu

Love like a splendid storm

~after Sara Teasdale

came on suddenly and drenched
us, left behind the petrichor
rising from the ground
that lingers after the storm has passed

done its damage, torn away rooftops,
placed a few things—pianos, tables, chickens—
down a mile away from where they had been
and now unharmed, become conversation,

an understanding of coincidence,
of happenstance, of being at the right place
at the right time just before the wind
picks up, blows through the caverns of the hearts

of two people overcome by its strength,
and leaves them standing in its lonely wake.

The Dream of the Cave

You found a secret entrance
to the cave just below my feet.
I peered down at the water 
filled halfway up; it seemed
more like a hole in the ground of
a field. A farmhouse at the horizon,
just above my eyelids, fell gray
and empty. The water shimmered
translucent, the top a smooth skin,
the moss glowed neon. I could see
all the way to the bottom
where small fish might live—
where I imagined them living—
and when you fell to the grass
and started digging, I smiled
and felt my hair whip my face
in small stinging lashes. The grass 
smelled wonderful, and my mouth 
opened to taste the clouds. 


Run the scenario through to the end—
inevitability—what happens when
the balloon pops?

Will love evaporate?

Or will it stretch
and, just before it bursts,
revert to its elastic self 
with give—moving from one 
moment, one person to the next?

My father told me bridges must vibrate 
to stay standing, but one cannot stand 
forever. Where we stood, on the second level 
of Oak Park Mall, overlooking Montgomery Ward, 
people-watching, we felt the floor 
quiver—the elasticity of the concrete—I heard 
my dad’s shortened breaths and my words
swallowed whole           saved up—

Anne Graue is the author of Full and Plum-Colored Velvet, (Woodley Press) and Fig Tree in Winter (Dancing Girl Press). Her work has appeared in Gargoyle, Verse Daily, Poet Lore, Feral: A Journal of Poetry and Art, Canary: A Literary Journal of the Environmental Crisis, The Ilanot Review, Leon Literary Review, SWWIM Every Day, EcoTheo Review, the museum of americana, Anthropocene Poetry Journal, and is forthcoming in Spoon River Poetry and Mom Egg Review. She is a poetry editor for The Westchester Review and for The Nimrod International Journal of Prose and Poetry.


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