Elizabeth Rees: "After Apollinaire"




Road edged with lime trees, kilometers 

roll out under a canopy of grief, shimmering

grieving leaves, an absolute grief.

I take your words to name my walk.


Among a noise of waves, and stars

the shade of milk, I meet the color white

at the pine bough’s tip. Fingers splinter sky,

skeletal fingers tugging at a knotted cord.


The solitary chord of a promise?

Once, the dead promised to return.

They said they would

send sea-lutes to adorn me. Adore me.


While I paced my long kilometers

they did not come. Among the noise

of waves and last promises, I heard

a thriving I could not see. Tonight,


the sky will be peopled with stars

and I shall drink and drink you once again.

Through milk, to air, from the color white,

I will meet you where the lime trees end.


Elizabeth Rees' first collection of poetry, Every Root a Branch, was published in 2014 by Codhill Press.  She has also had four published chapbooks. Her poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Kenyon Review, North American Review, Nimrod, Midwest Quarterly, Poetry East, and Cold Mountain Review, among many other journals.