Wendy Drexler, "Needlepoint Sampler"



  —Lydia Hart, Boston, 1744


Paradise is petit-point, cross stitch and trellis, thistle, 

Tudor roses brimming over the strawberry border 


bound by thousands of ambitions. Solid blue, 

that sky above the tree, the two, the view


of low-hanging fruit, the double-cross- 

stitched snake. Adam’s curly ringlets, Eve’s embossed


brown hair sewn halfway to her waist.

The pair stare straight out, hands braced 


on hips. Her lips, costly coral. The garden teems—

a butterfly, a brown yarn worm. A snail who dreams,


spiraling, and chain-stitched beneath the creatures’ feet: 

Adam and Eve in Paradice that was their pedigree . . . .


Greed decided. Adam’s fig leaf already basted into place. 

Eve’s breasts held high. Her nipples, two French knots.


Wendy Drexler's first book-length collection, Western Motel, was published in 2012 by Turning Point. Her poems have appeared in Barrow Street, Blood Orange Review, Cider Press Review, Mid-American Review, Nimrod, Poetry East, Prairie Schooner, RHINO, Salamander, and other journals. She is poetry editor for Sanctuary, the magazine of the Massachusetts Audubon Society.