November 1, 2017 orangeq2017


When the world gets small and tight, we want
someone who goes too far
when no one else will even try to mime
the dying art of fire,

someone who can talk to rain
the way the rain can talk to grass:
	Come up
	and make it green again,

who can speak from a tree
without ever leaning on a branch,
weightless, almost
even when no one else listens.

Take all the breath of candles
where the elders sinned,
all the chairs they could not fill
and put them in the wind.

Gather scars as though we own them,
tear down the scaffolding of our past, lean
into animate light that will pull us up
like plants out of the savage ground.


Roberta Senechal de la Roche is an American historian and poet of Micmac and French Canadian descent from Maine who teaches history at Washington and Lee University. Her poems have appeared in the Colorado ReviewStill: The Journal, Yemassee, and Cold Mountain Review, among others. Blind Flowers won the 2016 Arcadia Press Chapbook Prize, and her chapbook Winter Light, is forthcoming from David Robert Press.

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