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The 2River View

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Kathryn KirkpatrickListen



She knows better. She always has.
Icicle at the eye. No tears.

No man will ever cause her to doubt.
Herself. Bristle of fearlessness.
A face full of planes. Tufted pride.

Behind her the bare branches of winter.
A crescent moon.

But the coldness is not, has never been,
brittle. Beneath the sheen of iceflows
she is bear-hearted, lynx-limbed.

What woman would not trust herself
to this? Not safe haven exactly. Rather
a welcome danger.


Changing Woman

She’s as old as she looks
and younger. Her delicate jawline
has yielded to certain strength.

A river has washed her.
She has lain in the bed of it.
In drought. In flood.
Water and the lack of water
have carved her.

Tell her your income
and she’ll know how you’ve spent
your time as she knows the state
of your heart, what you have done
with your wounds.

And if you have spoken to the eternal.
And how you hold the unloved.

If you’re brave enough,
ask her what she sees.
She may answer.

She may ask you
what you plan to do
before you finally die.




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