One breath blown across the edge
of dawn, she wakes out of sorts:
another dream in which the wine
dried red across her skirt.
of morning pulls her shadow thin and black.
She mixes doubt and drinks her coffee black,
listens to an edge
of thunder promising cold. Time to (rise and) shine
the counter, the floor, a life of sorts, forage for clothes: a
blouse, a skirt
(not, in daylight, compromised with wine).
Church bells battle the whine
of mowers; a headline proclaims, "Black
Is Back!" Doesn’t that skirt
the real issue, the cutting edge
of spiritual birth? It takes all sorts
and so, there is no place she cannot shine.
She puts her coffee down. Shine?
Each discovery’s just another glass of wine,
a hangover on its way. She sorts
socks, memories, dreams, one black,
one white, nothing in between? The edge
unravels from the day: a loose thread pulling her skirt.
The magazines: what length skirt,
and giving your sex life a shine;
the things you own on the edge
of chaos (rape, cancer, war) – which wine
goes with a black
eye on a crying night? It takes all sorts.
Morning news. She sorts
the paper (murder, comics, war), then skirts
the onslaught of black type with more black
coffee and a shuttered eye – the shiner
she hadn’t dreamed. Don’t whine.
Look at the homeless, the mad, the poor, the edge
of chaos. Look: what sort
of chemistry blends wine and women’s skirts?
What crystal shines, and the women all wear black?
Anne Butler is a freelance writer and typist living in
Savannah, Georgia. She received her M.A. in Literature from the
American University before getting married, starting a family,
and going into business with her husband to publish a newspaper.
Eventually, she and her husband sold the paper, and Anne has
been free to return to her first love, writing. Her short story
"The Move" was published in The Writer’s Post Journal last June.