Saturday book feature — No Such Thing as Distance — Karen Paul Holmes

A White Room, A Piano

For every thing you have missed,
you have gained something else
—Ralph Waldo Emerson

My lost sons are not a wound.
The doctor did not cut my womb,
he didn’t make me hold them.
Time has stitched the pain.

What is gained in so short a life?
One breath each. Such slight air
wouldn’t ripple a candle’s flame.

I didn’t want to know them as sons,
but the county mailed birth records
to our home: Baby Boy A, Baby Boy B.

A year later in the same white room
where they died, my daughter’s
warm mouth found my breast,
both of us carried into legato sleep.

Now she’s 24. Her self-portrait
in grays and peach and yellow
graces our bedroom wall.
Downstairs she awakens
the piano with Satie’s placid notes.

by Karen Paul Holmes, from No Such Thing as Distance (Terrapin Books, 2018)

Instagram: @sharing_poems

Cover art by Eileen Paul Millard

buy link:


Leave a Reply




©2006—2023 Autumn Sky Poetry DAILY — Privacy Policy

%d bloggers like this: