Barbara Brooks, Author, Poems, Poet, The Catbird Sang, Hillsborough, Orange County of North Carolina, Finishing Line Press.
TheCatBirdSang.com
 

Published Poems by Barbara Brooks

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THE CATBIRD SANG
NORTH POND, PEA ISLAND
TRANSPLANT
WAITING FOR TRANSPLANT
RECOVERY
OPPORTUNITIES: FIFTEEN MINUTE CHECKS

THE CATBIRD SANG

and mewed from the weeping
cherry for its mate who lies
on the trimmed Bermuda.
Its tiny body lay beneath
the raspberries, black cap,
wing slate gray, feathers
dribbled with red.

The catbird sang
until dark.

Wellspring

NORTH POND, PEA ISLAND

Smooth, cold
a stone skips
the pond's silk.
Riffles weave
outward. Gravity catches
the rock. When it's pulled
to the depths, no circles
mark its passing.

Wellspring

TRANSPLANT

ROOM 3216, DUKE HOSPITAL

We did not choose to meet,
two women both forty--that's all
we have in common.

Each day, I bring news from the outside,
my dog is better, I saw a yellow warbler.
Taped to the wall are handwritten notes
from your sixth grade class,
your son's crayon picture
of your family.

In rounds, I comment
on your increasing heart rate,
pray your mind
can keep your heart beating
until a donor is found.

I promise to bring you
black raspberries
full of the sun.

Common Journeys

WAITINGTRANSPLANT

WAITING FOR TRANSPLANT

Some lie, pumps pushing blood
into dying hearts, others
sit with leathered lungs,
each breath a victory.

On the television
in your room, we watch
armored tanks in Waco
ram holes into walls, hoses
pump in gas, the devoted
don masks, wait to die
while buildings burn.

The machine by your bed
keeps time. . . 120 beats
per minute.

Common Journeys

RECOVERY

Six months of waiting,
you left for surgery. I hoped
you remembered the black
shell from the coast.

The next day,
I came to work,
punched your name
into the computer.

In your room, I saw
the aftermath of transplant,
bloated body, tubes, two
nurses working
to keep you stable.

You woke a few days
later to feel the shots
that kept your body
from rejecting
your new heart.
You muttered, "I won't
be a wimp." I stretched
your legs to work out
the soreness of the injections.

Once the monitors are off,
you can begin the long road
to walking. You have a shell
to return to the sea.

Common Journeys

OPPORTUNITIES: FIFTEEN MINUTE CHECKS

I
Cedar waxwings
pluck berries, ballet
among holly branches.

II
Sliding under the car,
I unplug the oil pan,
blackness streams
from the hole.

III
Six goslings hide
under their mother
for warmth.

IV
Someone ties a noose
in a hospital gown,

slips from the tub's edge.

Bishop's House Review

 
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