Blue Mountain Arts
Blue Mountain Arts
Blue Mountain Arts

Poetry Contest Winners :: Seventeenth Contest :: First Place Winner


by Liza Porter
I found our grandmother's long black coat
in the hallway closet next to where you fell

that morning, I'm wearing the knit hat
your husband gave you when your hair

started going, ice blue cashmere, the color
at the edges of a desert sky in winter

there are matching gloves, too, sister
the old-fashioned kind that go halfway up the arms

but you know all this, the gloves are inside on the table,
the scarf lost, he gave me all these things of yours to take home

three pairs of shoes, piano music, a file folder
full of your poems, but you know this, you were with us

hovering in the rooms of your house pointing out
all these things we’d never noticed, while we stumbled

around on the polished wood floors like the deaf and blind
in our clumsy clinging grief, one friend says she cried

for half an hour when she came inside the day of the service
your purse open on the desk as if you’d be back to grab it

any minute, now she imagines only peace, she says
your new wings, a better world she can only guess at

while those of us with the same blood in our veins
and all these things still wander in a spiral of why, how, what

could have been and will keep wandering until
all these things have been folded into stacks, hidden

in drawers and closets, given away, sorted out, divided up
and laid to rest.
Second Place Winner
Blue Mountain Arts