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  • Writer's pictureMarjorie Robertson


Updated: Sep 27, 2023


by Natasha Trethewey

We mourn the broken things, chair legs

wrenched from their seats, chipped plates,

the threadbare clothes. We work the magic

of glue, drive the nails, mend the holes.

We save what we can, melt small pieces

of soap, gather fallen pecans, keep neck bones

for soup. Beating rugs against the house,

we watch dust, lit like stars, spreading

across the yard. Late afternoon, we draw

the blinds to cool the rooms, drive the bugs

out. My mother irons, singing, lost in reverie.

I mark the pages of a mail-order catalog,

listen for passing cars. All day we watch

for the mail, some news from a distant place.

photo by Elena Shumilova

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