I’d say it’s to the left of the persimmon
Split open, my fingertips slide
into burnt-orange pulp.
Some days it’s in the grip of a hawk flying
up from the field, snake dangling from its mouth
Could be in the river, her rising rapids
urging me to pull off the road and moments later,
my clothes on the rocks, I enter her gasping.
It’s just below the oak tree where March wind lifts
my shirt, tender skin exposed,
and the squirrels don’t give a damn.
Added: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 / De Vries' poem took Third Place in the Split This Rock 2010 Poetry Contest. We are grateful to Chris Abani, judge of the 2010 contest.
Sonja de Vries is a Kentucky-born writer, filmmaker, and queer social justice activist. She believes that art is integral to creating a deep and lasting transformation of society. She was raised by a powerful radical, activist mother and grandmother. The poetry of Mahmoud Darwish, Nazim Hikmet, Gabriela Mistral and others formed her consciousness and continue to inspire her. De Vries's first book Planting A Garden In Baghdad will be released by Finishing Line Press in January 2011.