the rivers of it, abridged

New York City skyline at night


Fall 2007



Margo Berdeshevsky

Poem for Maureen

                                                    Her death came forth

fresh from the camellias              no one knew when

she entered their breath              What they said of

her was smoke and satin              weighted in song

What they thought was woman              imperious for

Rilke and cigarettes              hoping hard for

her wicker chair in the              wild field, longing

dazed to be kissed senseless,              saddle-bagged with

poverty’s skirt and tie,              her paradigm

the garret artist in a              forties dressing gown

pale pages, petals’              lyric waste lay

grey in her room with              the fallen white

lady-flowers old with              their spill she will

not now arrange them              among the ash,

not wash the dirty dish              its word stays un-

written on her table              to the dawn where

early death came kissing              young, he was kissing

her, kissing smoke              and satin down

(Previously published on the Tupelo Press Poetry Project site, July 2007, under the title "Midden of Dreams.")


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