Sarah Mackey Kirby

Sarah Mackey Kirby is a poet and writer from the United States. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Connecticut River Review, Dream Noir, Punk Noir, Rat’s Ass Review, and US News & World Report. She holds a Master of Arts in Teaching and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Louisville. She and her husband live in Kentucky.

For the Love of Poets

I sat Paris café, Seine-faced,
strapped to a chair
meant for waste and cliché.
Among the artists. The poets.
The know-its. And dreamers.
All of us
sitting alone.
Where gathered
the thinkers, the fretters.
Undiscovered no-namers.
The walk-of-shame lovers.
The talkers
sipping last night away.
The real. The irrational.
Laying claim to mercurial,
mulling masterpiece
strokes with a pen.
Drinking in spin.
Folks of same vein.
This international blend
of chagrin
and insane.

Our Burdens

When I bake,
it’s the best lemon cake you’ve tasted.
That ought to make me smile.
And my poetry. The next Emily.
You nod through every word,
even as you scratch your head.
Because blood clot mornings
and brain bleed afternoons
weren’t supposed to happen.
Not to me.
And you understand.
You. Understand.
Dreams curl like thread
wrapping a spool.
How watching me hurts you.
So every crease in your clothes,
I iron perfectly.
Every coffee cup placement,
I space-plan strategically.
I am Monet landscaping Giverny
when I paint roses and phlox.
Possess the greenest thumb
ever to grow dill.
Wear a sexy silk dress
in sweats and holed socks.
You’re determined to convince me.
You. Must make up for it all.
For my plans. Sea-sunk
to bottom sand. Your pained eyes
shine endless encouragement,
as you lift this burden.
Shoulder my off-balance drift.
How the weight of that. On you.
Is the heaviest I carry.

Love Me

Love me till the realness
falls away from here,
in kisses whisking ’way the blues.
All the confused hard-knock
no-joke news. System shock to
my insides, hiding scar-messed
skin in midnight August room.
Give me Zen-spiced tangled
nighttime promise of
While sprinkled moon’s
sheet-creased shadows
slide hold-me-tight escape
from heart-mend, skull-slice
mere-minutia mornings.
Transform these tears
to honey drops.
Hold me in my rhythm-left,
in love-me-swept,
in sweat-laced folds of you.

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