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Carrie MacLeod

the fishing settlements

pine in dowager’s grooming a felted braid pine in box cloche dear dear pine in swanville bristle to pace pine in auspice in clotted hawthorne pine in mixed marble wool pine in hollow frond feldspar pine in poleax muster by bees & alewives pine in best rake i laid pine in burn to hire out of state pine in dormer grandma oyster bed pine in seizures no heaven pine in dusk barrel height of land pine in paul revere’s gun rack pine in bed a ledge a stitch pine in moses lord he can’t pine in alonzo bless my circular saw pine in  creeping jenny cower seep & pine in naples causeway to be born blue to see i pine in green gloves  trawling lakes pine in murky shell bottom drop pine in chamber parlour lath pine in cantilevered guns  washing canned fish pine in bleak berries pine in eyesore peeled paint pine in old salt his death a cast iron pine in the wheel giveth the wheel taketh away pine in the fallen weight of rope pine in my left boot pine in the blousy edge of grim pine in all freight in all ships pine in the tall ships pine in hermitages boarded to die pine in harpswell gang signs true love no bottle pine in appleton plenty of money pine in highliner acura cocaine pine in least but not lift laws pine in blacked out windows pine in incognito pine in diesel &  godzilla smoke shows pine in shelly got drunk and drove into the basin pine in if you weren’t born here  pine in they left me to die pine in hard telling not knowing pine            

the farmhouse

in every eye there is a thread

that i seal with foam

there is foam

that i pull from mouths

& string with grass

to hang off utility poles

but neither does the work

a shallow pool makes grey

makes high tide

in pulling lines i am a chemistry

to the tide i am asleep

begging to be treasured

as darling bells they are almost pale

or is it yellow

i spy the apple bell he is in perforation

tiny dots tiny parasite holes

white & pressing

we are one two three the spoiled daughters

in a house rented by mathematics

with a bargain toaster and cross-stitch

& our mother never talked back

she was small and spoke no english

she was small and spoke no evil

i ran to her    forgetting    

but fell into the basement

where i lay upon the floor

listening to phil collins

& looking at antique tools

i rubbed my hand in the dirt

to settle my stomach

the music made me feel like

i had joined a cult 

so i crawled to the bulkhead

pushed open the doors

& found it was raining

& thought i might run away again

the curse of murmured witches

space inside space

is how i understand

precision     its undoing &

noiseless undertow

clenched into refusal


small explosions inside the eye

a knife for divorcing & breath that discovers

it will hear itself

merely or surgically


            she tells the body it is a worm

pillowing for mother (sound)    


i read four lines

tremor on tremor

green grey & gold on water

wreck that it was

& drowning

mary in a sheath dress

of pond scum


how is it

that squares boil their own display

& tides are immaculate

in basic paranormal curfew

neither she nor i neither she nor

                        whether i tend to


damages from

delicate objects as if they were

       droning in latin      too late

humble barrier

corrected     glazed

& i will wait for agony

                       or if it is pounding will wait for my name

once by her armature

small in cellular harm

Carrie MacLeod is a disabled poet/musician from Trenton, New Jersey. Her poems can be found in SUSAN/The Journal, Q/A Poetry, and Cathexis Northwest Press.She lives in Maine with her children and cats.

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