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Tag: @ConfusedNarwhal

This Morning I Pray

after Joy Harjo

My cousin is a field I keep coming to

but am afraid to trespass on.

I stand on the edge and look over.

With a shovel I dig out a burial ground.

I don’t ask my cousin’s permission. In it, I pour

all the things I’ve saved that hold the guilt of him:

Pokémon cards, maps of our new civilizations

and forts, trading card contracts, photos

of us sticking our hands in a flame. A weight

inside me lifts. I ask him where his stutter is.

He says, I ate it whole. He says, someone

is ripping down my grandmother’s house. Her

land, where we used to play, sits

on the edge of his field. He shifts

under her foundation, as if tapping

his foot. My cousin says,

you stopped coming over. I say,

you stopped inviting me. Invitation:

an etiquette my mother required of me,

something my cousin has never understood.

A week grows on my cousin. Then,

another. I know I should pluck them

like weeds but instead watch them grow,

knowing whatever I say will be the wrong thing.

My cousin has stopped talking to me.

What could I ever say to get him back?

Sometimes I walk his perimeter and try

to remember where we used to build our forts:

I look for familiar patterns, but all the paths

are overgrown, and all the trees begin to look the same.

A new tree is growing on my cousin.

In the light, it’s translucent and full—

I take a picture and carry it with me.

Inside me, I build a new house.

from Poetry Northwest 12.2 Winter & Spring 2018More by Meg Eden from the library

Copyright © Meg Eden
Used with the permission of the author
on behalf of Poetry Northwest.

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.