Jul/Aug 2017 Poetry Special Feature

I Confide in Mrs. Whatsit about My Divorce

by Jennifer Finstrom

Image courtesy of the British Library Photostream

I Confide in Mrs. Whatsit about My Divorce

"'Wild nights are my glory,' Mrs. Whatsit said." Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time

It rained heavily last night, and this morning, I saw
that the wind had torn the heads from the daffodils
I'd been watching open all week, yet another
reminder of how sad nature so often makes me
with its gallery of sudden still lives, halted

in the midst of bloom. Even indoors, I worry
that I'm overwatering my two plants, that I
should spend more time with them, tell them
more about my day. I remember every dead
or dying bird, think more often than I should

about that sparrow in my front yard when I was eight,
the other sparrows seeming briefly to grieve
before diving back into the sky. Mrs. Whatsit is a friend
to the wind, lets it weave ribbons in her hair, wears
its uniform of majesty and terror like a ruffled nightgown.

I can tell she thinks I'm foolish, that even though
flowers and birds are as important as love and family,
I should just quicken my steps and get to the train.
By the time I'm waiting on the platform, the sun will
be out, its siren call brighter than all those scattered petals.


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