: Demeter in Winter :

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an excerpt by Debora Greger

Earlier and earlier, the dark
comes to the door, but no one knocks.

No, the wind sharpens a stone,
it scratches the window with snow.

Clouds skate the ice of your old room,
daughter, a cloud falls to the floor

and can’t get up—
or are you my sister? Remember the rope

that was tied from schoolhouse to home,
so the blizzard could find its way to us?

Snow climbed into the attic,
it spread a white sheet and lay down in the dust.

Who left behind the army greatcoat
into whose cave we crawled at night?

I hear voices at the door. Lie down beside me.
Under a blanket of snow, something freezes:

the mind’s gray rag, caught on a rusty nail.
Come closer. Tell it to let me go,

say I am not the woman I used to be,
just bones turned to sand in a sack of skin.

Daughter, if this page isn’t blank, turn to the next
and read me the part where you. disappear.