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A Poem for Clara - Kate Phillips

I see your lips close around words of

worlds of wisdom, and suck on the history

of Neverland and papaya meadow politics,

slurping at the magic of story like it is

your mother.

I see you calmly draw cards and all the

stillness that should be in the clocks, the

tables, the windows and walls moves towards

your hands, which sit perpetually

under sweet rain, still as coins from a

fountain, silent, carrying the weight of

time, bronzed and dying every minute they touch air.

I see your skin grow softer each time you bathe

yourself in the honey of fire ants

that come with thinking about death.

While the walls and clocks and windows shake

you have stripped them of their façade of man,

revealed them to be like a belly, like a lung,

the breath of the world that is drawn upon so

many spirits it does not always know itself as whole.

Split the papaya and talk about Peter and you are

drawing the string between two ends, knitting

the soft blanket smelling of honey, of babes,

of angel milk, this resting place from everything else

that is not the world. Save your hands.

Honey before water, and breath becomes milk.


While longer fiction is her true love, Kate Phillips loves to write poetry inspired by nature and relationships, both human and animal. When she isn't writing, Kate enjoys playing the piano, hiking, running, and spending time with her family and cat.


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