Laura Schulkind: “Machu Picchu”


Twin flat-bottomed bowls
still sit in the temple remains,
carved from the granite hauled up
to this tip of earth touching sky—
shallow vessels transformed by water
into ancient star mirrors
used to study the heavens.

I knew the moment I saw them
where I would be
night of the next new moon—
my backyard across the world,
bent over the birdbath
tucked in among the lilies.
I had never before imagined it,
standing in darkness,
water still, not a ring or ripple.

The night comes
and it is cold and clear,
the water black and full of stars.
I look to find their sky in my sky,
search this inch of water holding the universe
for the light that connects us.

Laura Schulkind has had work appear in Bluestem, Caveat Lector, Crack the Spine, Dos Passos Review, The MacGuffin, Minetta Review, Pennsylvania English, Schuylkill Valley Journal, Talking River, and Willow Springs. Her chapbook, Lost in Tall Grass (Finishing Line Press), was released in 2014.

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