Poem by Cathryn Shea

May 15, 2023

Please Give Me Your Ars

The sunset is grim
with evacuations out on the coast
and claret-red inland where wineries sear,
vineyards with grapes burned at the stake.
I lapse into a dead language,
a wounded soliloquy
reaching out like arms of a nebula.
Salva nos, something far away repeats
like an irksome tune
when all I want to behold is art, beauty.

Sun daubed on our sky,
gauze bandages of clouds.
Season of fires again.
Predictable each year now
and on schedule,
part of a new portrayal of autumn.
Bad air fitted with particulate matter
seeps into my lungs for the long haul.

Tomorrows parade around my kitchen table
with its legion of empty chairs
and stacks of newsprint
where food should be served.
But we eat in front of the TV,
our minds flickering, snowy and lacy.
I witness world events that require a dictionary
vaster than my galaxy. No wonder
what I hold feels obscure and I want to despair
of convincing anyone these warnings are dire.

About Cathryn Shea

Cathryn Shea’s poetry collection is Genealogy Lesson for the Laity (Unsolicited Press); chapbooks include Backpack Full of Leaves and It’s Raining Lullabies. A Best of the Net nominee, her poetry has appeared in Gargoyle, Tinderbox, Permafrost, and Rust & Moth.

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