Andrea Moorhead

The Illusion of Evidence

It’s in the leaf mold, out back where the land slopes down,
if you rake off the top layer you might still see it
it doesn’t look like much of anything
almost charcoal colored, sometimes beige
anyone’s guess if it was a wing at some other time
or if the swollen sun shed a mote when no one was
looking at the ground
it isn’t crystalline or powdery
it tends to disappear if you stare too hard
perhaps a glaze might describe it
a slight shimmering when you turn your head
away from the light.


Reading the Light

How I learn the weather of your heart
depends on the angle of the sun
the intensity of the snow
the shock of ocean water
when ice crystalizes on sand
or murmuring closer and closer
I listen to waves beneath your voice
to movements redirected
in the gold green grass
that lines the inner cavities
where we wander without return



words have a rind like lemons
bark like the thin runes of birch
they clatter along at phantom speed
ricocheting against memory
without anticipating any discussion
hemlock sap in early spring
while we attempt to retrace the path
of syllables light years beyond
our touch.



Tipping your words so far over doesn’t prevent them from nonsense or preclude misunderstandings, the basket is flowering by itself, all the stems have rooted elsewhere and you’re carrying the night too far, too far out of sight, too far along the broken axis, the split dominion of arctic waters, and you’ll never get back here without speaking louder, without shouting across the void, without screaming all night all day all in-between when any space you come to know will vibrate apart, so tipping your words so far over doesn’t prevent madness, doesn’t prevent misunderstandings, doesn’t seem to go with the calmness you’ve assumed, mastered, digested until the first blizzard knocks you out again.

© Andrea Moorhead

Andrea Moorhead is editor of Osiris and author of several collections of poems, including The Carver’s Dream (Red Dragonfly Press, 2018) and À l’ombre de ta voix  (Le Noroît, 2017). Recent translations of Francophone poetry include Night Watch by Abderrahmane Djelfaoui (Red Dragonfly Press) and Dark Menagerie by Élise Turcotte (Guernica Editions). Moorhead’s French work was featured in Phoenix 23 (Marseille); her English work will be featured in the Autumn 2018 issue of The Bitter Oleander.

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