Heddy Reid


We know the heat by heart, and at the equinox,
we've lost track of how the seasons spin,
of how they play us fast and loose sometimes.
While we're still riding summer's ease, ragged
crickets commence to stitch us urgently toward fall.
Carefully tended borders bolt, while formal gardens,
restrained and held in tasteful check till now,
break rank and riot, flaunting splayed-out petals
and fruited floral parts, a fevered exhibition
from the edge.  So much noise, disharmony,
and unexpected ardor!  And something like a promise;
something someone slips us to keep us safe
against the coming dark, to hold, hold against the long nights
bereft of warmth that even now are rumored in the hills.


I expect cleaning the restrooms isn't so different
from validating historical principles, or from napping
after the exertion of writing a poem, which I am fighting.
Thursday I pulled off the Interstate just south of Baltimore
to, as they say, refresh myself.  Inside the Ladies', a toilet's
electric eye caused it to ghostflush as I rose from the seat,
yes, and at the sink, water coursed from the tap at the merest
pass of my hand underneath.  Who could have foreseen this?
Certainly I would do toilets, but would rather not,
all things being equal, do urinals.
                    Listen: we get off
onto back roads with narrow bridges, barns tilting
toward the horizon, boys on their backs half-swallowed
by rusting cars. Dogs on chains.  Where the face of inbreeding
can appear in any doorway, or the face of an angel.  Miles
and miles of this. But the black earth roars down by the creek,
and yesterday I saw about a hundred wild turkeys tearing up a cornfield.    

Heddy Reid's poems have been published in Alimentum Journal, Yankee Magazine, Sun and Moon, The Calvert Review, Potomac Review, The Washingtonian, Antietam Review, The Sand River Poetry Review, The Southern Review, and Passager.  Her chapbook, A Far Cry: Poems of Childhood and Psychoanalysis, was published recently by Finishing Line Press.   Her work appears several anthologies, and she has read widely in the DC area.  She has led workshops in DC and New York.  Heddy has worked for many years as a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, and has been a "book-doctor."   She and her husband live in Washington, DC.  They have two grown sons and a splendid new grandson. 



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