This Morning- Jo McDougall

As soon as this piece popped up in my inbox…well, as soon as I saw it and took the time to read it. I knew that I had to share it here. It’s a piece on loss from American Life in Poetry. This is why I love poetry! The story develops, the feelings almost palpable for anyone who’s ever lost someone. It’s just beautiful. I hope that you all enjoy.

image

As I drove into town
the driver in front of me
runs a stop sign.
A pedestrian pulls down his cap.
A man comes out of his house
to sweep the steps.
Ordinariness
bright as raspberries.

I turn on the radio.
Somebody tells me
the day is sunny and warm.
A woman laughs

and my daughter steps out of the radio.
Grief spreads in my throat like strep.
I had forgotten, I was happy, I maybe
was humming “You Are My Lucky Star,”
a song I may have invented.
Sometimes a red geranium, a dog,
a stone
will carry me away.
But not for long.
Some memory or another of her
catches up with me and stands
like an old nun behind a desk,
ruler in hand.

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