Monarchs are migrating once more, and as usual hang
in great clusters of orange and black in the same
groves their insect ancestors flapped through—purposeful
dry leaves on a gusty day, the air a frenzy of handfuls
tossed and lifted and carried as colorful and fleeting
as childhood memories; my grandmother’s face
is a tree of happy hinges landing and leaving, filling
and particulating into the strange, familiar spilling…
I keep a secret box, latched, closed like her oven door
the element unlit, where she kept her dry cereal stored.
God and devil don’t want me she said, I’ll be earth scattered.
Please, just here, I guess, this dirt—all that’s mattered.
Jeremy Voigt’s poems have appeared in Gulf Coast, Post Road, Willow Springs, Fifth Wednesday Journal, BPJ, and other magazines. His chapbook, Neither Rising nor Falling, was featured on The Writer’s Almanac. He has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and his manuscript, Estuary, has been a semi-finalist for the Dorset Prize, The Crab Orchard first book prize, and the Miller Williams prize.He lives, writes, reads, parents, runs, and lives by a large lake in western Washington. You can visit him here www.jeremyvoigt.com.
Photograph by Robert Wnuk.