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June Analysis

Author: poem of Denise Duhamel Type: poem Views: 15

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The blue forest, chilled and blue, like the lips of the dead

if the lips were gone. The year has been cut in half

with dull scissors, the solstice still looking for its square

on the calendar. Perhaps the scissors were really

lawn mowers or hoes. Perhaps God's calendar is Chinese.

As first I didn't understand those burlap dolls

slouched in Central Pennsylvania craft stores.

Where were the button eyes, the tiny pearl nostrils?

the smudgy pink watercolor cheeks?

I enter the woods--part Gretel, part Little Red.

Such a small patch of sun makes it to the ground

through the leaves. The tree trunks are all elbows and knees,

all arthritis and gripes. The Amish think it's wrong

to render nature, quilts abstracting each pattern's name

of tree, buggy, corn, horse, farm.

My uncle, not Amish but superstitious, holds his palm

to the camera in a Christmas photo. Before she died

my grandmother ripped up all the pictures of herself.

She liked a novel with mystery, magazines without nudity.

The boy was killed by a drunk driver. My Amish neighbors

forgive. I prefer seeing it all, the snot, the optical nerve, the liver

behind the belly's skin. I prefer a good fight,

a wailing of grief. The Farmers' Market sells apples

as red as tricycles. The dolls without faces

want it silent. The forest, all anger and yesterday,

newspapers blank as white cotton sheets.

the branches, the teeth, the awful vees.

Anonymous submission.


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