Tuesday First Drafts

Cori Spezzati

Each day, my right hand repeats
A running major scale
On the brassy handrail of my ascension,
And I sing a song
Of myself, all the versions of my
Self, plucked from between the shirts
And boots and scarves of my identity.

The intermittent rain cloaks the day,
Wears the sky like the mantle of the
White witch, just as threatening,
With none of the false sweetness of
Turkish Delight.

And Pilate's song for Hagar
Keeps pealing in my head
Her words like a basso continuo
The strength of her voice bleeding
Into me even as I know
That strength was not enough to save,
Was not enough to cover the loathing
That killed Hagar's smile
And emptied her eyes.

Oh, mother of Ishmael,
Sarah tucked you in and thrust you out.
The Code of Hammurabi forced her hand
Carried you into his bed.
You had no voice,
But you were seen by God
At Beer Lahai Roi,
And you brought forth a wildness
And carried on.

I wonder if it will rain on that day
Or if the sun will blister
The mourners and force their eyes
From the darkness.  I wonder
If the wind will carry their voices in
It's woven yellow basket or if the clouds will
Burden them with their oppressive weight,
The antiphony of life and death running
Like scale patterns across the sky.
I wonder if I will pronounce of myself:
And she was loved.

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