Katherine Smith



We gather from the lawn the chairs and toys,

tie down straps of umbrellas on tables out back. 

Yet apples can't be fastened to the trees

nor the rose petals to the thorn bush.


Precious weight will tumble through high wind:

a crystal ball, clay pots, sun dials, bird baths

tossed over the roof of the house and discovered

in branches of white pine the next morning.


Our words learn rebellion from the storm,

overflow prediction as hurricanes

flood earth beneath the rain barrel.


Before electric power is restored

water must sink deep into red clay;

the forecast dissolve into blood and brains.

Katherine Smith is the author of one book of poetry, Argument by Design (Washington Writers' Publishing House, 2003).  Her work appears in Southern Review, Ploughshares, Louisiana Literature, Poetry, Louisville Review, Appalachian Heritage (where her poem "Shipment" won the Denny Plattner Award for Outstanding poem in 2008), Poems and Plays, Measure, and Appalachian Journal.



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