We live at the end of the story. The light is low here, licked gold
and warm with blown breath and there is a sweet smell of hyacinth
and tilled earth, as in a hothouse of steam and spun glass at the edge
of spring. Did you think it would be all silvery middle, blood, muscle,
the bite of the wind’s sharp teeth? There have been plenty of wounds,
plenty of cold afternoons the yellow of melancholy, fool’s gold, and fear.
Plenty of low years spent hiding from shadows and the sun’s slick eye.
But now in this ash-strewn season there are bulbs bursting from the dirt
green-fleshed and gleaming, heavy with the thick and heady sweetness
of a happy ending. We bloom in a little gilded room in the heart
of the ruined city. Everything dead, beloved, will become good soil.
Margaret Wack is a poet and writer whose work has been published or is forthcoming in Strange Horizons, Arion, Passages North, and elsewhere. She enjoys good tea, dead languages, and bad weather. More can be found at margaretwack.com.