April [poem] by Michael Northen

The irises are too late for Easter.
They have taken a different path
bodying out in new guise
from small, shrunken tubers
to a world still chlorophyll and carbon
sunlight and soil
no remembrance of self, if self
or remembrance were possible.

What are we to do
now that Saturday is past
and it’s still raining
but look for recognition
in the bend of an earthworm
or some hint of memory
in a sudden shift of air.
Droplets shining on the leaves
are not grace
but dew condensing to remind us
that all is evaporation and return.


Image of 1930s Switchboard Operator

[Refer: This poem put the editors in mind of K.T. Browne’s story “Iodinical.”]

Image by Br3nda

Michael Northen edits Wordgathering, A Journal of Disability and Poetry and is co-editor of the anthology Beauty is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability. For 14 years he facilitated the Inglis House Poetry Workshop for writers with disability. He is currently working with Sheila Black on an anthology of disability short fiction. An educator for more than 40 years, Northen has taught adults with physical disabilities, women on public assistance, prisoners, and rural and inner city children.