Pamela Dillon’s Poetry

Jun 29, 2017 by

Pamela Dillon’s Poetry

The Winter Morning (With apologies to Mary Oliver)

Who do you think you are?
Who were you before that very last ending?
Who made the decision?
The one where you leave and I stay? No one offered miracles, they looked
through you when they called your name.
Tell me what else should I have done?

Who is laying in bed awake, eyes open instead of shut⎯
who is listening to heartbeats, ear to chest counting?
Now I feel the verdict and the weight of time and measure both.
Now he mouths, I love you so much and turns inward.
I don’t pray because I don’t believe.
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

I learned how to reach you, down in the marrow,
into the vessels; how to make my hands reverential,
how to take every moment and wring it through, I make
time stand still, keeping watch all night long.
In the last days, your eyes seek me out—curious
Tell me, what is it you plan to do?

Does the sun ask if it should rise?
Geese lift from the river and pass over the house,
I turn my face from yours and look up, why
should I care that the morning has come?
When I have to trade the Gods
with your one wild and precious life.

The Practice of Love

I explored the brave
lot, staking claims,
graveyards are stilled
with the ordinary, mourners

come on anniversaries
with news to share and
no one to share it with.
He drives slowly. Others

bring candles and blueprints
for rehabilitation, fat
babies, verdant potted
plants and stones,

withered love waiting
to leap with joy
as though at an
arrivals gate. Or departures.

I am on the right side
of creation – watching, He
sits in the car as if waiting
for God to call an all clear.

I bring tangled flowers
and a daughters worth
of resentment, study a man
who keeps promises.

He makes way, then kneels,
carefully pulling weeds, humming,
and plants a red geranium
with both hands — open.

In the practice of love, patience
is the greatest benefit.
Life pushes fast and slow
love this old takes time.


Pamela Dillon is a writer and poet, and has been published on the CBC Books – Canada Writes website, in the literary journal Tin Roof Press, in the William Henry Drummond / Spring Pulse Poetry Anthology, and most recently, in the Globe and Mail.

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