From "Thirty-Three"

By

In another story it would end like this:

when the heart grew weak from too many lashings,

when the soulmates vanished or disappointed,

she took off for a penthouse greenhouse

where lilies danced in a fan's warm breezesand nothing could touch her. And sure enough

nothing did: not her unborn blushes,

let alone guests from the cold, with their glad red faces.

Her greenhouse turned green with clippings. But then

one night, sipping strong mint tea, she remembered

the stir a branch makes when spring rain bends it,

how it dips and veers in joy, in fear, for dear life.

The splendor of all her wounds waiting to happen

entered her, and she wrote a story:

"I summon hunger and risk, those lovely

scattershot graces," was the way it began.

By rachel wetzsteon

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