Karina Borowicz, "The Old Country"



There was another country
always spoken of
with reverence.
I didn’t understand
why we’d left, I didn’t yet
understand the saw blade
of history. I was nourished
by nostalgia for a place
I couldn’t remember.
Wasn’t there a great forest,
a bison that would lap
milk from my hand? 
The scrape of that secret
dark tongue.
A woodsman’s cottage,
shelves lined with carved
and painted birds.
Our fireplace was where
the stories were read
from a burning book.
Molten logs, lit from within:
See the shadow of a man
in there. See a terrifying
creature with wings.
See it all fall down.


Karina Borowicz is the author of The Bees Are Waiting (2012), selected by Franz Wright for the Marick Press Poetry Prize and named a Must-Read by the Massachusetts Center for the Book.  Her second collection won the Codhill Poetry Award and is forthcoming in 2014.