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  • Christine Delea

So Many Swans Could Mean Something by Karen Donovan

published in Exploded Assembly

(Sow's Ear 2019 Chapbook Competition winning chapbook)


I don't want to talk about what we have lost, I am not sure

there is a difference between prayer and conversation


anymore, why anything happens, why thinking

is suddenly like this breathless occupied midnight.


Out back where the clouds skim the black surface

of the pond, it's as if we called them, and now


you are saying, Look, the whole flock is here.

Snorting, nickering, they drift, white boats on a moonless tide,


making and breaking engagements on a night when everything

gets decided. It is time to sleep, but who can sleep?


The water could not be blacker. We watch them,

lights off in the house, window slid wide,


standing on the great divide where the mind

is always leaving the body behind.




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