At the Center Poem By Patricia Goedicke
Six feet by three feet patch
swells upward, slightly
greener toward the chest.
Plastic carnations, polka dots.
Behind, tall wheat,
some pines, a ragged fence.
And the occasional clink clunk
of the cowbells we hung here
once, when we came out
with Phoebe and Tobin, two blonde babies
tumbling, one still at the breast.
But now you are nowhere in evidence, down there
dressed in the green sweater I knitted for you
when we first met.
On the horizon, 350 degrees of raw mountains;
the passing brush of wind—
At the center, a handful of whiskery,
wild roses in a pot,
and a clump of sunflowers that burns
like a yellow warning light, stuck, swinging
in the middle of a deserted intersection
surrounded by old ranch houses, faint flecks of snow
still visible on the mountains.
first published in The Hudson Review, vol. 55, no. 1,