by Elisabeth Weiss
Elisabeth Weiss teaches writing at Salem State University in Salem, MA. She’s taught poetry in preschools, prisons, and nursing homes, as well as to the intellectually disabled. She’s worked in the editorial department at Harper & Row in New York and has an MFA from The University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She’s published poems in London’s Poetry Review, Porch, Crazyhorse, the Birmingham Poetry Review, the Paterson Literary Review and many other journals. Lis won the Talking Writing Hybrid Poetry Prize for 2016 and was a runner up in the 2013 Boston Review poetry contest.
My children fight like puppies.
They bite, they goad, they test.
My neighbor teaches me to make an o
with my thumb and pointer and press;
for deadheaded pansies will regrow
when dormant seeds are coaxed.
Bones thin and glow on screen.
After each fight, a scream
and then they forget.
I lie here waiting to be blessed
by a machine examining
the labyrinth of bone and flesh.
Inside are years I never talked about
and years I could do nothing but.
Forgive me for how I seem.
It is not how I was.