Name and Order
She is the root of my harmony,
the musical staff, earthgrazer
on early earth of cattail mats
and shutterdogs, prairie berries,
modulation. Chords stack
as thirds. With my mother, octaves
and tones wingbar our identity.
Topaz leaves a humid way
to look at day on day of beating.
I have seen the split of her ribs
into her dark cavity, and afterwards
the scars on chest, arms, and legs,
where arteries have gone to loop
the beats of what should be
the happiest perfusion. Pray
for the soul, the old stone read
in French, until stolen from behind
the Church of the Holy Family
to be thrown in a horseradish field
or off an overpass, the words
busted away from name and order.
We have walked many times
by what the priests wrote: he who
perseveres until the end will be saved.
Post-on-sill filled with prayer
from when the Mississippi
was known as the river
of the immaculate conception,
and walnut, oak, cypress, sycamore
are held together with wood pegs,
sided over with trendy times
and then stripped back down.
The spirit in the ribs cannot
be seen like artemsia and its tarragon,
hyssop or dill, or the lull
in rusted barbed wire, and mortar
moved from earthquake’s days.
Saved from old fire, the vessels remain.
The monstrance holds the luna
and the sun. The chalice cups
the blood, the paten the host.
The missal holds our text.
Angie Macri was born and raised in southern Illinois and now teaches in Little Rock, Arkansas. She received her MFA from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in journals including Crab Orchard Review, New Delta Review, and Southern Indiana Review and was featured in The Spoon River Poetry Review. She was recently awarded an individual artist fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council.