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     Holly Guran

I dread news about sick people

            about the parts that fail

                        that thin and frail

                                    stretching what held to a thread

                                                the spider’s thread

                                                            spun like gold

                                                Rapunzel let down your hair

                                    let it flow from the high window

                        onto the terracotta where

            a spider hides in its crevice

 a rabbit’s eating onion grass

            bold not hiding

                        I would like

                                    not to hide

                                                not to grow bitter

                                                            not to fall into

                                                                        the dark crevice

                                                            but to spin

                                                a strong thread

                                    to tie the thread

                        to a word that coheres

            a bracelet of charms

my mother kept charms

            for us daughters

                        and all our cousins

                                    had birth dates

                                                engraved on them

                                    we played with those cousins

                        although they didn’t live near

            that did cohere

I wear the bracelet

            hold its charm

                        before more cousins

                                    are dead

                                                the women at Yoga

                                                            got laughing

                                                                        some silly pose

                                                            struck by mistake

                                    ripples of giggles spread

                        then we signed the card

            for the woman

in surgery


Holly Guran, author of Twilight Chorus, River of Bones, and the chapbooks River Tracks and Mothers' Trails, earned a Massachusetts Cultural Council award and coordinates a popular Boston reading series. Her work appeared in journals including Compassion Anthology, Mom Egg Review, Poet Lore, Poetry East, Borderlands, Worcester Review, and Salamander.

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