Swingin in the Attic

By RACHEL HADAS

 

In Richard’s attic, I
swung on a swing suspended from a rafter
and listened to two fables
read by my host in a voice that sometimes broke.


His son’s train sets occupied the floor.
His family was elsewhere, as was mine.
Or did I have a family any more?
We each inhabited our lives alone,
I want to say, although it isn’t so.

This sounds like allegory, but it’s true.
If we are lucky, this is what we do
at some point: listen, swinging to and fro,
to old stories a fresh voice makes new.
As to their morals we weren’t of one mind,
but we agreed about the ever after.

 

 

Rachel Hadas is Board of Governors Professor of English at the Newark Campus of Rutgers University.

Click here to purchase Issue 03

Swingin in the Attic

Related Posts

poetry feature image

January 2021 Poetry Feature: Bruce Bond

BRUCE BOND
I was just another creature crawling from the mausoleum, / and I thought, so this is it, the place in the final chapter / where I am judged for all my cruelties, blunders, failures of attention, / and I waited for the furies to take me, or some such host. / But it was just another morning.

Sky full of comets

Poems in Translation from Bestia di gioia

MARIANGELA GUALTIERI
And he soars / saved, outstretched / untouched by the gravity that pins us / down / we deserters of empty spaces and heights / shadows cast / into modest taverns for a bite. / Heads in capitals / of rust. / A lifetime annuity of darkness. / Only a cry can save us now.

poetry feature image

December 2020 Poetry Feature: Denise Duhamel and Jeffrey Harrison

DENISE DUHAMEL
Where was I / when I was 20? I’d already been accepted / as an exchange student, taking my first plane ride / to London where I’d catch a train / to Wales. On that first flight, I sat next to a woman / in a shawl—how old was she? It’s hard to say.