13.4 (Summer 2009)   The 2River View AuthorsPoemsPDFMake a bookArchives2River

Renee Emerson

Storm Front

I listen to rain falling down the chimney,
rattling like bracelets on a bony arm.
The wind sucks out air
from the house, making the sound of fire
where there is no fire.
I am on our red couch writing,
you are in the bedroom sleeping.
If the storm comes, it will come
for us both, writing or sleeping,
so I let you sleep, the better way
to meet fate: with your eyes closed
thinking of something else.

Visiting at St. Francis

When the nurse gets out,
Mawmaw tells me she read
in a magazine there's healing
power in the noise we make.
Then she draws back her tongue,
funnels a moan
from the holding tank of her body.

I remember sitting hushed with her
on the porch of the house
she can't have anymore. Listen,
and in the droning of the cicadas,
we are still and close enough
to hear the rattler nest beneath.

Slither-hissing in the coils,
a little noise to mark the evening.

Renee Emerson recently completed her MFA from Boston University. Her work has appeared in
The Blue Earth Review, Reed Magazine, The Santa Clara Review, Tar River Poetry, and various others.
She lives in Louisville with her husband. contact