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Shannon Hardwick: a poem

In the Dream My Mother Comes to Me Having Just Lost a Child

We stood at the water's edge.

We seemed happy or terrified.

When the burning dies down,

my mother said, I become a

surveyor, a house punctured by

drunks stuck in amber. I tied a

yellow ribbon around her neck.

Her spine silverfished. I recall

the dream as I stare into a bowl

of milk this morning, smelling

limestone. My daughter says

she woke to a woman crying

outside her window. That

woman was me.

Elizabeth 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.


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