A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature. Over 15,000 daily subscribers. Over 6,000 archived posts.
Like leaves to sun, people in the room turned
toward her when she appeared at the door—
plain as metaphor—beaming. Happiness
flows, Tsvetaeva wrote, from the happy
man. It used to flow from me. They leaned
her way eager for relief. She saw on strange,
tired faces her brilliances reflected.
My loneliness, she wrote. Washing up,
water and tears. What flowed then was around
and from, like washing up on a beached, drowned—
plain as metaphor. She stands, hands
sunk in cooling water and suds, curl
of glass between finger and thumb, and remembers
a self in which happiness once just was.
Copyright 2023 Sandy Solomon
Sandy Solomon’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Gettysburg Review, and elsewhere. She teaches at Vanderbilt.
Beech leaves (photo: Richard Osbourne)