Edited by Andrea Spofford | Barry Kitterman | Amy Wright
Jessica Guzman Alderman
Three cockatiels crowd the birdcage, creep
across the bamboo perch to the pulse
of rain puddling in a corner of the seed
guard, below the leaky skylight spring.
The palmist asks to feel a woman’s pulse,
says, “A wolf through the door is love’s creep
out the window,” predicts a cold spring,
suggests a diet of fig and apple seeds.
A girl draws hearts the way wind seeds
a song along the block, mattress springs
indenting her knees—her pinkie pulses
against the pencil’s steady creep.
Behind my knee an amber freckle springs
like a curved wrench run to seed
by rust, like a winter dusk creeps
up on suppertime, quickens the pulse.