Andrea Potos

Andrea Potos is the author of nine poetry collections, including Mothershell (Kelsay Books), A Stone to Carry Home (Salmon Poetry), Arrows of Light (Iris Press), An Ink Like Early Twilight (Salmon Poetry), and Yaya’s Cloth (Iris Press).  Her poems have been published widely in print and online, including in The Sun, Poetry East, Peacock Journal, and gratefulness.org.   She lives in Madison, Wisconsin.

ON LOOKING AT MY HANDS AND SUDDENLY SEEING

MY MOTHER’S

The hands of her later years, whorls
and lines like an old grained wood swept
and polished by time, made thinner
by wear and spotted with spools of darkness
here and there, souvenirs of the days
I knew myself a sun goddess, rapt
under light and becoming bronzed, those years
when you didn’t even have to ask me, I knew
neither she nor I would ever die. 

VISITING THE HOSPICE

Call it heaven already--
air of ochre light, art on the walls--
a mosaiced Balinese dancer, a cathedral of orchids.
I glimpse siderooms filled with books,
leather sofas to sink inside, windows
with green views of paths winding
somewhere I cannot see.
Along the spacious hallways,
no one hurries. 
Each person who greets me
carries a stillness I long to keep.
My friend sleeps most of the day now;
at the door of his room, I pause,
knowing the safety of his passage.

BELOVED POET

From her heart the swans and snow geese,
the owls and goldfinches took flight
 
to trace a cursive path across the pages of the world
that did not know it needed poems
 
to live, until the rustle and sweep of great wings
swelled the air, landed on windowsills
 
and curbs, on fenceposts and thresholds everywhere
alighting on beauty, balancing on truth. 

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