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Poem of the Month

Sarah Rose Nordgren’s poems have appeared in Agni, Ploughshares, the Iowa Review, the Harvard Review, the Literary Review, the Best New Poets anthology, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of two fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and an Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio.


From Best Bones

by Sarah Rose Nordgren


Sun silences the house. Between bough
and twig, a splintered branch. Mother stands behind
the wall. It is miniature: the baby’s coffin

floating rooms like a canoe at dawn, smudging
wood floors like water. I want so much to see
his face, eyelids blue and shining under lamplight,

but he is wordless, invisible. We paint Easter eggs
for him, the prince in the moving tomb,
and find them in the grass all blue and spotted, slick

with baby slugs. Before the service, I refuse to wear
my dress. Want to look older for the limo ride.
Mother is a silhouette coming downstairs.

The women have eaten fruit and drunk their coffee.
The sun rises over the lawn where forgotten
eggs hide. The Lord is risen indeed.

Lilies light the way to the humming car, full
of believers. I sit to the right of my father.
My cousin’s dress is too big for me.


Copyright © 2014 by Sarah Rose Nordgren. All rights reserved.











© 2014 University of Pittsburgh Press. All rights reserved.