Jul/Aug 2007 Poetry

Spring Housecleaning

by Penelope Scambly Schott

Photography by Kawika Chetron

Spring Housecleaning

I am sorting through a cupboard of skeletons:
the giving flesh I used to touch has fallen away,
the pretty boy whose smell I breathed for lunch.

I am sorting through odd drawers of notions:
a hundred, hundred tiny silver thimbles stashed,
or what is prophesied by seeing thirteen crows.

But mostly today I am sorting through words:
Everything shabby or chipped or out-of-date
gets set on a table for my coming garage sale.

There you have soup tureen, concupiscence,
insurmountable grief. Here you have bobeche
for catching candle drips, pianoforte, shame.

I'll bargain: take two, and the third comes free.
I'd meant to set out pincushion, darning egg,
but then I couldn't seem to live without them,

just as I still need williwaw, that terrible polar


Previous Piece Next Piece