Shannon Hardwick: a poem



Mid-to-Late Motherhood


In this instant, geese fly away

from the palm of my domed sky


on the way to somewhere warmer.

For months, the sun shrouded


in shadow in the garden. I slept & dreamt

& I let go of my body, of what to expect,


as only a mother can. Above the roofs of many

houses, I once wanted


to claim a whole village. In my youth,

evenings arrived as a proposal


of marriage in perfect light.

In a kitchen cupboard, I hid each lie


I told myself – time is perpetual persimmons

on a walk in Central Park. It never snows.


What happened won't happen

again. You won't double yourself,


return with a child in a field,

break up a flock & collect a body


only to bury it

again. Then again.



Shannon Hardwick's work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Magma Poetry, Gulf Coast Journal, The Texas Observer, The Missouri Review, Four Way Review, Harpur Palate, Sixth Finch, and Passages North, among others.