Thursday, July 3, 2014

Poetry Review Special Feature: "Life's Continuous Chain" by Anne Whitehouse

Songs of Eretz Poetry Review is pleased to present "Life's Continuous Chain" by Anne Whitehouse.  Ms. Whitehouse received her BA from Harvard College and her MFA from Columbia University.  She is the author of poetry collections—The Surveyor’s Hand, Blessings and Curses, Bear in Mind, One Sunday Morning, and The Refrain—as well as the novel, Fall Love. She lives in New York City.

Life’s Continuous Chain
Anne Whitehouse

The music of wind in trees
and rain across wet grass
binds me to earth and its abundance—
every vine, leaf and flower vibrant
along this path where I have gone in trouble
for the wind to ease my sorrow,
or in despair until it seems
the red sunset is my own blood
dissolving into the night.

The swamp is a reflecting pool
stained dark by leaf droppings,
where light falls in silvery shafts,
and the shadows are emerald green,
like longings from childhood
that begin and end in mystery.

Below dark, glossy leaves,
under a tangle of vines,
a dappled pattern catches my eye—
a wild sow lies nested
at the base of a magnolia,
breathing deeply, absorbed in rest.
At a little distance is her litter,
a mass of shifting bodies,
birth-damp still upon them.
One piglet, pied black,
with a white band around its middle,
wriggles out from under the others
and wobbles to the sow’s side.
It gives a delighted whimper,
and the rest of the litter
ambles over to discover
the miracle of the hairy breasts.

A silent pulsing, steady and vital,
by dark, shining waters,
under rustling leaves.

Poet’s Notes:  “Life’s Continuous Chain” was inspired by the beautiful landscape of Florida and the close connection to nature that I feel there.

Editor's Note:  Ms. Whitehouse captures a miraculous moment and brings it to life.  As I read her enchanting poem, I felt like I was there.

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