A cutting from the willow tree,
Our newborn child sunning
As I rooted it in water. A dozen years later
It wept over the house falling
Into our intemperate climate. Children
Calling in the dusk, catching fireflies
While we argued or didn’t speak.
A rainfall of wishes. The street buckled,
Sewers blocked by eager roots arranging a thirst.
Everyone drinking, smoking pot or sleeping
With someone else’s spouse. The dogs barked
At nothing. The willow tree
Swayed its gentle hula as jackhammers
Tore up the blacktop. We
Moved elsewhere with our books and tools,
The drama of our children. Green braids
sheltered the Immeasurable.
Joan Colby’s Selected Poems received the 2013 FutureCycle Prize and Ribcage was awarded the 2015 Kithara Book Prize. Her recent books include Carnival from FutureCycle Press and The Seven Heavenly Virtues from Kelsay Books. Her latest book Her Heartstrings was published by Presa Press in 2018.