Donna Vorreyer’s first full-length poetry collection, A House of Many Windows, is now available from Sundress Publications. Her work has appeared in many journals including Rhino, Linebreak, Cider Press Review, Stirring, Sweet, wicked alice, and Weave. Her fifth chapbook, We Build Houses of Our Bodies was just released from Dancing Girl Press, and she also serves as a poetry editor for Mixed Fruit magazine. Visit her online at www.donnavorreyer.com.
Finding A Way
In my pocket, I keep a speckled stone
to turn between my fingers, plucked from
a wild Galapagos shore, the slow roll
of waves feathering the black sand beach.
Some days disappear like stones inside
pockets, like the tide that rushes then spills
over shores and jagged coastlines, a child’s
crooked drawings, wild and uncontained.
I want to be more like the color red,
like a cardinal whose plumage parades
its presence. Instead I tuck my head
beneath a wing, nest myself in shadows,
camouflaged in the breaking mist.
But because the day was rushed, I almost
missed the cardinal outside my window,
the slow burn of its brilliant wings
setting small fires from branch to branch.
Instructions for Stones
Start wild, tumbling in the tilt and spill
of a landslide. Hone your edges sharp enough
to draw blood or round and smooth enough
to settle in the easy masonry of a pebbled
bridge. Become a metaphor for silence lodged
in a woman’s throat, for worry in the gut
of a soldier. Take flight. Crack a windshield
on the freeway. Settle in the hollow of a small
boy’s fist for skipping. Bury yourself in deep
pockets of a woman walking into the River
Ouse. Live clean and speckled and favored
on a windowsill. Weigh down the pages
of a well-turned book, anchor the carcass
of a chicken as it stews to make the soup.