Sometimes, after the dust
settles, after the lane warms
you in deepness of soil, I'll
dress your chestnut hair
with poor sails of weathered
plumes, clad in unpinned
Canterbury bells. Daughter,
what shall stitch wings to
caterpillars, drink a flower's
thirst like a beggar holding
forth an empty cup? So, hush
little darling, we shall plant
water, sift stones with the
patience of still river, spade
easy where goblin worms sally
through, until the quiet swell
of fireflies flicker red into your
infant hands of need, weighing,
hazed with stars I urge you name.
Right hand opened, left hand closed,
you were the escapist traveling from
one footnote to the other, like a face
forever unseen but marveled against
an embroidered coat of sheep leather.
Each breath a poem composed, skied
into luminous pieces with the timing
of tongue’s thrust down on dew-pink
hyphens, protesting the wary pauses
between verses. And all this to merely
lay me down inside the aged, vintage
balance of scent and soil, knowing the
bones of my fingers will wander along
the sacred edges of vellum, hatching of
air and impressions as if counting fools.
A three-time Pushcart Prize & Bettering American Poetry nominee, Lana Bella is an author of three chapbooks, Under My Dark (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2016), Adagio (Finishing Line Press, 2016), and Dear Suki: Letters (Platypus 2412 Mini Chapbook Series, 2016), has had poetry and fiction featured with over 400 journals, Acentos Review, Comstock Review, Expound, Ilanot Review, Notre Dame Review, Waccamaw, Word/For Word, among others, and work to appear in Aeolian Harp Anthology, Volume 3. Lana resides in the US and the coastal town of Nha Trang, Vietnam, where she is a mom of two far-too-clever-frolicsome imps.
"Footnotes" and "Planting Water" were previously published in the online journals BlazeVOX and Whale Road Review, respectively.