A shared life: poems, 1st Edition by Katherine Soniat

By Katherine Soniat

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54 dc2093-13695 CIP 97 96 95 94 93 P 5 4 3 2 1 Page v For Rick, and for Catawba Page vii Since the wild animal's back now is your shoulder, And since the miracle of not-being is finished, Start then, poet, a song at the edge of it all To death, to silence, and to what does not return. Antônio Machado Page ix CONTENTS One Right Here, 3 The Future, 4 Fortune, 5 Domestication, 7 What We Keep, 8 Telling Time, 9 Oranges and Rum at Noon, 11 Balboa in Spring, 12 Some Vegetables and Stars, 13 Story Line, 14 Water Translation, 15 Desire, 17 Two Janus in Autumn, 21 Gifts, 22 Making Ghosts, 24 In a Dark Country Night, 25 Last Song, 27 Mount View Pure, 28 Other People's Houses, 30 Item, 33 Graffiti, 34 Learning in Time, 35 A Square in Mozambique, 36 A Comparable Season, 39 Three Routing the Maps Home, 43 The Next Day, 45 Deer Season Again, 46 Taking Possession, 48 Crivelli's Pietà Angel, 49 Full Grown, 51 A Short History of Stray Bullets, 52 Diminutives, 54 Two Daughters, 56 War, 58 Marks of Light, 59 Four Primer, 65 Free-falling, 66 Rhapsody, 68 From a Vantage Point Overlooking the Battle of Hanging Rock, 69 Rings, 71 Distance and Design, 73 Daughter, 74 Primary Motif, 75 Prediction, 76 Shame, 77 Page x Five Terrestrial, 81 October Bestiary, 82 Think about It, 84 Bedside Story, 86 Santa Rosa Island, 87 Wanting It, 88 Harboring, 89 Secrets about Nothing, 91 In Spite of Forgetting, 93 The Springhouse, 96 A Shared Life, 97 Page xi ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Many thanks to the editors of the following journals in which these poems first appeared.

They all appear calm, breezy as birds in the flyway, until a white rhinoceros produces himself with a dusty snort and settles for my apple tree, flashing a white grin at a scene that started amiably enough with men dressed for shiny-buttoned combat, mounted on horses, gliding expertly toward Hanging Rock. Page 70 Then, they had my permission, and they had a time of it in heavy boots, the horses in an orderly country rampage, until this valley kingdom vanished, leaving me to a rhinoceros staking out my apple tree war, the grinning white hide of a dream.

Page 82 October Bestiary Shucks flit the horizon, then fall earthward where everything is on the move this late October day, crows circling their black fleet off past the cut cornfield. Squirrels scamper, the hesitant ones bled into the highway by cars, those steady weapons, so unlike the zigzagging pursuits of the morning dog who cornered a snapping turtle on his way from ditch to pond. Big turtle caked with bulrushes, the stench of time, his thick neck and claws older than any Moses in the marsh.

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