THE WARTIME ISSUE
A MARINE COMES TO TELL HER WHAT SHE ALREADY KNOWS
This is what a mother knows –
hands soaped with hot dishwater,
there is a lurch in time,
a shiver under her breastbone,
breath caught at the back of her throat
and something perfect, soft as velvet
drops away. She raises her head
but does not see the early robin
on the winter lawn.
She finishes the dishes
because she must do something –
throw away old shoes,
hang freshly laundered sheers,
dust books in her son's room,
scrape bathtub grout clean
with her thumbnail.
From the wretched heart of her
pristine house she sees the young man
on her porch, tugging at his dress tunic,
white-gloved hand reaching for the bell.
......................................who was nineteen
Linda Blaskey, originally from the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, now resides in the flatlands of Sussex County, Delaware. She is a founding member of the writer's group that meets at the Rehoboth Art League and was organizer of their Writers Day. She serves on the organizing committee of the annual John Milton Celebration of Poets and Poetry held in Milton, DE. Her work has appeared in Terrains, Literary Mama, and a broadside entitled The Poet Laureate Presents and has been included in Poetry in Public Places, a moving exhibition supported by the Delaware Division of the Arts. Her manuscript Leaving Arkansas was a finalist in the 2005 Dogfish Head Poetry Prize competition and she was awarded a 2006 Individual Artist Fellowship in poetry by the Delaware Division of the Arts.
Published in Volume 7, Number 2, Spring 2006.