Sunday, October 2, 2022

Three Poems by Suzette Bishop


Your name of prairie grasses,
of freezing months,
of winds carrying me off,
of blizzards making me lose myself,
of your gray coat turning to white,
of breath hanging in the air,
of sparks crackling from your just brushed tail,
of hooves making a sacred drumbeat against earth,
of smooth gait rivering toward ocean,
of mane's tendrils firing white,
of smoky dust rising after us.

Eclipse of the Moon

it leaves and returns
like you

feather laid against the moon
loosening into the profile

of a death horse
the moon her eye

of cloud signals

say don't feel afraid
the horse can see your envy

stomp it out
let it go like a feather

Dear Plexiglass Students

It's lovely to see your shiny selves again
after going online in March
and being off during the summer,
recovering from the screen,
from typing all day and into the early morning,
my eyes burning.

You are a sight for sore eyes,
so clear, see-through,
attentive and waiting,
seamless waves
rolling gently ashore--
     The live stream is lagging
     Press "Skip" to catch up--

Speaking through a coral mask
made at a bridal shop
makes me slow down,
pronounce every word carefully,
after months of rarely speaking.
I saw the usual things bout the syllabus.
your part, my part.

I didn't miss the sound of my voice,
or words in PowerPoints,
or textbooks,
or official emails,
or assessment reports,
or syllabi,
those word arrangements undertowing both of us,
wires ready to lasso us tightly,
finish pulling us under.

I've scribbled a few words on a pink Post-it note
I've placed in front of me:
Don't make it harder than it is,
Stay with me,
Focus on taking in the info
rather than putting out texts.

At the moment, that's all I have for us,
post it to yourself
and let it drop once it becomes a part of you
or no longer serves you.

Suzette Bishop has published three poetry books and two chapbooks, including her most recent chapbook, Jaguar's Book of the Dead.  Her poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies.  She lives with her husband and two cats in Laredo.

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