Because devotion. Because ether. Because the saint holds a paintbrush, his sorrow. Because the grass may grow sharply, its knives. Because wonder. Because somehow a dove has nailed itself to the shadow of a tree. Because at some point in this holy story, a wrought iron door is opening. Because we could not speak for ourselves, we let the molecules do the talking. Because the power lines, the city. Because the city, the fires. Because each square of hope turned out to be hopeless, we let our eyes roam as they pleased. Because the painter’s gaze, no exit. Because illegible the text of the dove’s scarred wings.
Photo by VV Nincic
ELIZABETH KNAPP is the author of The Spite House (C&R Press, 2011), winner of the 2010 De Novo Poetry Prize. Her work has recently appeared in The Journal, New Orleans Review, Rattle, River Styx, and Sonora Review, among others. She is currently Associate Professor of English at Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, where she lives with her family.