We begin a week of poetry today as National Poetry Month continues. 


by Clive Collins

by Terri Kirby Erickson

A nurse dropped my beautiful
mother’s wedding rings into
a plastic cup, along with her
gold ankle bracelet and a Saint
Christopher medal that did not
save her. She still had leaves
clinging to her long hair from
lying on the ground beside the
front porch, where I found her.
More leaves littered the floor
beneath the hospital bed, as if
she was a dryad who wandered
in from the woods, dragging
bits of her leafy bower behind
her. But she was not a dryad.
The bleeding in her brain, the
doctor said, was not survivable
and she did not survive it—the
shock of my mother’s death
like a fog that would lift, soon
enough, for anguish to follow.


About the photographer: Clive Collins is the author of two novels, The Foreign Husband (Marion Boyars) and Sachiko’s Wedding (Marion Boyars/ Penguin Books). Misunderstandings, a collection of short stories, was joint winner of the Macmillan Silver PEN Award in 1994. Clive is author of Carried Away and Other Stories (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2018), and is poetry editor at The Sunlight Press.