It doesn’t dance but creeps along the spines
of books grown dusty. I know the dust will stay.
Through the window, our side of the street is patched
with white. The other side is lined with squares of green.
Downstairs, the kids’ squawks and cries keep me anchored,
they rise and make me think of lifting things,
children not my own. Some seem to have bird bones
and threaten to fly away. The heavy ones
are just as surprising, their pockets filled
with secrets. I’m amazed at what death takes.
When my mother-in-law died, I could have
lifted her with two fingers. My father
turned into a ghost, his features blurred
like an old photograph. And now this
morning light takes everything and leaves
just enough to make me stay.
Jim Zola has worked in a warehouse, as a security guard, in a bookstore, as a teacher for Deaf children, as a toy designer for Fisher Price, and currently as a children’s librarian. Published in many journals through the years, his publications include a chapbook –The One Hundred Bones of Weather (Blue Pitcher Press) — and a full length poetry collection –What Glorious Possibilities (Aldrich Press). He currently lives in Greensboro, NC.