Three Poems


I take it up again 
as I would pick up a knife 
which had killed my beloved 
but that I now must use 
to feed myself. 

Sonnet to the Muse III

I open the door and you enter 
my life, shielding with raised hand your 
downward-turning eyes, furor 
concealed there, revealed in the glint 
of the knife you hold as if you meant 
to carve dust from the air impure 
enough to see. I hear the cure 
of your arrival from some center 

to me, here on the outskirts of time 
from which we’ll leave together, travel 
across the openness of water 
by which we are astounded, as by rhyme, 
and taught to see the distances unravel 
to various shores: sister, cousin, daughter. 

Sonnet to the Muse V

The lake speaks in ice. Yet ten yards 
out the blue breaks through, a hurried 
pause which parallels the flurried 
frozen sand, then a hundred yards 
of ice again. The Schefflera regards 
me, jungle plant I bought and buried 
here inside, driven, ferried, 
flown from its warm shade towards 

this north where we breathe and wait 
in a third-floor room whose view 
is six red porches, a driveway’s breadth 
of snow, the changing sky, the weight 
of brick, blurred windows, for you 
who visit late, when friends have left. 

CAROL DENSON wrote these poems while living in Chicago along the shore of Lake Michigan. She now lives in Austin, Texas. Her poems have appeared in disClosure, Earth’s Daughters and Gulf Coast, among others. An essay on poetry and parenting entitled “Transfertle the Plum” was recently published in Rattle. Her work has been supported by the Houston and Harris County Cultural Arts Council and the Jentel Foundation. A chapbook Across the Antique Surface was published in 2013.
The Adirondack Review