"Of A Verbal Silence"

from Volume 5: Wild Mercury


by Millicent Borges Accardi

Of a verbal silence,
We saw and thought
Riot, as if we could be not
Safe or sure but not still
Exactly otherwise or not
Not at all it was on a lark
A spit or an urge that we set
Out to find a hawk, that bringer
Of change, a soul spirit animal
Who bears solidity
And a certain measure of trust
Into our lives that even embedded
In sadness we can have an old-found
Confidence of what we are doing
And the ashes are in the air
Blown like soft white seeds,
Milkweed, contained within 
a shell that can travel
The wind, with bone fragments 
and bits of earth, cloaking our fingertips
Like cotton gloves meant to
Protect. We say a few words,
Half-remembering what the last
Life of words should be, and we name
Off the flavor of our grief, all 
Emotional and shaken, fingertips
Ashes, stone. We watch our souls
With a gentle kind of new urgency.
As they carry us to what must surely 
come next:  fingertips, ashes and stone.

Millicent Borges has this and one other poem, "To You, Who Saw Fjords and Coral," in Volume 5, available for purchase in our bookstore!

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