Three Persons Poem by Fanny Howe

Three Persons

Rating: 4.5

The fields are infertile
as far as I can tell.
Their winter systems
sparkle like the diamonds
that pelt Neptune.

Limpid silvers
reflect in the dark
museums and theaters
back in town.

To them we run
to elevate our eyes
to a well-shaped ethics.
Colors are supplied
by our nervous minds.

Towards a just
and invisible image
behind each substance
and its place in a sentence
you must have been walking.

Well-defended, best
when lost from wanting.

Be like grass, she told me,
lie flat, spring up.

We drop the shadows where they are then
return to them
when the light has grown heavy.

You'll take your time lugging the weight into our room.
Or stand over there in the shade.

We've never been too sure that we exist as the earth does.
We're most at home in water
that soaks up the letters in our brains.

It could be we have been dry too long.

A spirit is a mess when excess spoils it.

I see them through the slats
and crack of the open window.
A cold rain. Leaves flipped
and palsied.

The river is brown near
the sand, loose banks and twigs
stick at the edge and a lilac's
silhouette of a child I love.

How in the dark hole can I hide
if   I can't get outside?

Then I won't remember
what I did to deserve it.

That arch and bridge
will form a shape of repentance.

If  I'm hanging,
then judgment has been passed.

And I am hanging

upside down
head swinging towards the moon.

Years of  inversion.
A face in a mirror displaced
by its position outside silver.

And so?
Next will come muscle,
a little grief   but no shoulder.

You're learning how to be a unit
with an infinite in its attic.

It's not difficult.

Light is the last message.

White streaks like oil paint
are the first to appear along the wet railing.

Next similar colors
correspond by chance.

We would rather be (die) with total strangers than with partial ones
we realized in the elevator going down.
It was the only time that day that we were as alone as we were awake.

Sensing a just
and impartial ghost
close to each living thing
I could see the genius

of  institutional religion.
Examine your conscience.
Confess in darkness
and take away a task.

Soon you'll wash off flesh
scented by its parallel past.
What were your feet thinking in their hurry
to connect the parts?

Get the children to the other side!
What children? You were the one running.

There was never any other.

Dave Greenwald 26 September 2016

A very good poem. Thank you for sharing your wonderful skills as a poet.

2 0 Reply
Sylvia Frances Chan 02 December 2021

CONGRATS being chosen as The Poet Of The Day

0 0 Reply
Ratnakar Mandlik 27 September 2016

A beautifully envisioned meaningful write. Thanks for sharing.

0 0 Reply
Susan Williams 26 September 2016

The phrases were well-written but I lost my way between them... I think I need a road map or a long long time meditating this

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Seamus O Brian 26 September 2016

A lot to mull over here. I feel like I am wandering through a field, and all around me the varied beauty of many different wildflowers are calling for my admiration. Parsing the various elements and word images is enjoyable, but I feel like I am missing the grand cohesion, but maybe my feet were hurrying to connect the parts when I should just focus on watching the wild flowers sway.

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Edward Kofi Louis 26 September 2016

As far as i can tell! Thanks for sharing this poem with us.

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Fanny Howe

Fanny Howe

Buffalo, New York
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