Cold Comfort

Antonia Clark

Afternoon Rain

Clouds hunch and shudder, slope-shouldered
lovers who once crowded like children over
a handful of pebbles, slick from the river.

The kitchen fills with yellow light. Voices
fall away. When it comes, the rain wavers
on the glass, gathers, then gushes all at once.

A woman holds back the truth of her life
as long as she's able, then spills everything,
learns that she's always been insatiable.

Now she will stop at nothing
and there's nothing left to stop her.

The Third Night

The lake held fast to its huge and stubborn silence.
Searchers slumped on the edges of beds,
while wives rubbed their backs and sobbed.

The bass line from Tutti's thumped
over the water, dragging a wake of revving
engines, an occasional starburst of angry shouts.

We drifted in and out of the drowned girl's
story, damp sand gritty on my back, and even
as I moved under your rough hands,

I claimed her body, submitting to the waves,
cornsilk hair streaming, limbs some man
had once pinned to the ground, rising, falling free.

about the author


12.3 (Spring 2008)   The 2River View AuthorsPoemsPDFArchives2River