To hear Gail Mazur reading "Mother's Day Ghazal," click here. Sometimes a shift in tone is all you'd need to make you happy. A shade, a shadow—but then you wonder, is this happiness?
Heady scented air of wisteria, lilacs, and vibernum
that could drown you through the seven windows.
When you lived on a peninsula, a disoriented shark stranded
in the shallows; you observed her with terror, pity, and pleasure.
May, so ruthless with your feelings: you're fiercely in love
with your two children a tumultuous continent away.
Still, you could swim naked beneath the Pleiades at high tide
and dance barefoot without music, without a partner.
Altruistic surrender—the merciful self-exoneration
of maternal memory—undone by a child's mythologies …
You attached a screen door to the children's room;
an avid cat could climb and cling and never reach their cribs.
Although you have not been granted all you craved, you feel
no grievance, only an abandoned nestling's agitation.
If an era ends, who will interpret the last chimes?
A cafe closes, currency burns. The present's an archive.
Word arrives of Tokyo's crows pecking at schoolchildren,
the elemental smear and grime in immaculate narrow alleys.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Ebola Story
How our minds build narratives out of disaster.
The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics
A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers
Welcome to 13th Grade!
Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.