Crocuses, you’re down there somewhere,
but, sorry to say, I forgot you existed.
The New Ferocity gave me brain-freeze;
the continent a crystal skull of ice.
Across a gyre of debris-field waves,
your imperial purple has been dredged from floods.
Resolved into a dew, soaked earth overheats.
So it was with last spring with the cat. What cat?
I spent a week in and out of bed with death,
playing nurse or doctor in a backless gown,
hooked to a slow-drip icicle IV.
My sister brought crocuses to block the snow
of overbleached sheets, the view, my mirrored blank.
Name snipped off my wrist, I was free to walk.
At home, my kids swooped, captive songbirds.
Funeral or wedding march? I climbed stair-stop-stair.
And there on the bed was the cat. We have a cat?
I’d forgotten she existed. Only then could I melt.
KATERI LANTHIER’s poems have been published in Canada, the U.S. and England. Her first collection is Reporting from Night (Iguana Books, 2011). She was awarded the 2013 Walrus Poetry Prize.