Two Poems

Poetry / Elizabeth Scanlon


I could hear the roses reaching,
              unfurling like paper crumpled in reverse,
and thought of my young uncle long ago
              with his beautiful long hair, who said
he was watching his fingernails grow.
              I didn’t know
anything about being high, it wouldn’t have occurred
              to me he was,
and that he was kidding, I only thought,
              oh, how good to be so patient,
you see so much.

Summer Mother, Six A.M.

There’s this myth
that summer is carefree
when indeed it's just the bright leaves
returning that obscures the view
of the skeletons;
wanting to replace all the lost things
just like the leaves returning to the trees,
where are those green jade teardrops
stolen from my mother’s ears?
I am the god looking down
at five suns in a bowl,
five perfect gold yolks
suspended in their own cosmos,
deciding whether to smash them
or fry them whole.