Regina Coeli deWinter

Rock Through A Window

For several months I've sat, almost every evening, undisturbed,
by the same window in the gathering gloom,
expecting nothing, wanting it all -
embroidering quietly with furrowed brow and busy hands,
filling the creamy blank muslin with visions in silk,
hoping - always hoping -
to get the pattern to a place where I'd be comfortable enough to
set the hoop aside and live a bit.
There have been those occasions, less rare than I'd like to admit,
when I've pushed the needle through carelessly
and gouged myself awake, startled into action to prevent
the bright and living blood from staining my artwork.
A fortnight ago, during a quiet bloodless spell of stitching,
the crystal crash of a rock through my window
caught me dreaming.
I leapt from my chair, an involuntary shriek escaping my lips.
Dropping the needle, hoop and thread I ran, heedless of the night,
out the door into the velvet blackness of my fenced front yard,
hoping to spy the miscreant who shattered my glass and my silence.
Of course no such person waited;
having satisfied whatever destructive urges aimed the rock,
s/he had rushed away into the arms of darkness,
safe from my recriminations.
Turning to reenter my solemn shell of a house, prepared again
to stitch until my eyes could no longer blink back tears
of disappointment and exhaustion, I paused,
a sudden waft of childhood sweetness teasing my senses,
leading me instead back down the walk
and out the steadfast iron gate into the waiting world.
Following the familiar perfume, I remembered things from lives ago,
things buried deep, now stirring in the night:
the beauty of a summer day when nothing but the voice
of nature called,
small yellow butterflies skimming past my nose as I lay
flat out in the sun on grass so green it fairly shouted,
the smell of sweet clean earth and pear blossoms
washing down in the errant wind,
the black and white of knowing wrong from right,
the fairytale security of my birthright:
someday living happily ever after.
Down the deserted sidewalk these thoughts carried me,
'til I discovered the source of this hatching -
old Mike's honeysuckle, twining round his split rail fence
like beloved arms come to treasure me, yet shaking me awake.
I buried my face in the blossoms, gratefully inhaling
'til I was dizzy the nostalgic breath of dreams long slumbering
but stirring now.
Whirling, I ran back to the house, up the stairs, into the room,
and seizing needle, thread and hoop set them ablaze
on my brick hearth before returning to the night
to commune with my longlost life.

weather report

it's 3:16 and 62 degrees,
warm Wednesday,
freak December.
we'll pay for this come Candlemas, I know.
I have a theory -
self-centered, crackpot -
about why all this spring weather
so late in the year:
it's because my furnace went out - gone -
nevermore to warm me in my wintry aloneness.
the gods looked down and, taking pity,
sent the sunshine and soft breezes to embrace me
awhile longer before the fury of the blizzard
descends across this naked landscape,
sucking all the warmth from my bones,
leaving me chill and brittle,
frozen near to death.

Regina Coeli deWinter is a published poet and photographer living and working in a small Connecticut River Valley town. Her work has appeared in print in The American Muse, Niederngasse, The Gall and in The Uno Poetry Anthology. Online credits include The 2River View, Disquieting Muses, Wired Hearts, Aileron, AustinDaze, Comrades and many other venues.


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