Anne Shaw

After So Many Years

Last night I dreamed that starlings flew
past the windows, massing in the trees.
Like something from Ezekiel, you said.
I partly understood the tongues they spoke in.
This morning, lightning flickers in the hills.
Hornets fling themselves against the glass.
Something living rattles in the walls.
The book falls open to the word ‘desire.’
How does the dowsing-rod know when to shake?
How does lightning know which oak to crack?
Daylight binds the fire in my limbs
to distances and so much open air.

Anne Shaw
“After So Many Years” is from Undertow (Persea Books, 2007).