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Lisa Creech Bledsoe

You are Here

In which I explain to Crow, and am given a story


1. Belonging words

I'll try to make sense of belonging to words.
I come from a long line of daredevils
and clever nomads who knew how to
get the best of a trade and hightail it out
before the law got wind. I belonged
to a lot of broken bones
back when all the casts were white
then gray. I was insanely lucky.
Shag carpet and silver-flecked formica,
linoleum outgassing machined security and
place promises.

I got a cheap silver necklace from a booth
at the fair, mesmerized by barkers
and flashing lights, drugged on the incense
of candy, asphalt, and carny grime.
We didn't have a moon and didn't need one.
I clutched my cheap silver cross in dread of
vampires while my mother ran the wash at night,
untangling smaller horrors.
I assembled fraught altars of words
barred the window with them, but
could still hear a warlike marching music
each time I turned my ear to the damp pillow.

2. Curvature and stars

Cradletree swings, sings
some chicks gone but day's end
wind rises, calls. We belong
to weightless

The curve returns, we
find our roost under
silver-ribbon clouds—
windspill, beak forward
then jig, hitch and settle
all shadow fade, hush-ahh-shh

Crow and I Discuss Nyx

"One might wonder how such a large and not-so-distant structure remained unnoticed."
— Daniel Pomarède, on the discovery of a dwarf galaxy hidden in center of the Milky Way


Holding to Crow, I begin
to turn. We are stacked like hymnals,
spiraling up through autocrats
and epidemics, galactic dust
and woolen heaps of lemurs dying.

A half-lit coin of moon reveals: You belong
in us, and we in you, bound by the holes
in your wings, hawks in pursuit
and the passageways mice make
beneath rainbent grasses. Still

there are galaxies we cannot see.

I see my reflection
in the gold moon of your eye—
there is no contention between us.
Or when there is, the story conjures
a shade beneath the crow-sown trees,
come to release us to find our lives
before our deaths. We are at once strong

and in peril. It is well to say little,
listen more. None of us will
contend with pulsars or planets
who will have the next and next
and last blazing perfect words
built of light-years and epochs.

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