February 9

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry

Today’s poem for Valentine’s week comes from “The Next Hunger,” a new poetry collection by Kimberly Green of Kittery Point.

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine poet laureate.

What Now, Praying?


By Kimberly Cloutier Green


Heart, you softy, you sap – you’re getting fat,

breaking into dumbfounded tears in your sleep

and waking bedazzled by ordinary light,

the old cat in a heap of dreams beside you.


There was a time I hardly knew you

were there – thin as air! –

cool customer, smart answer.


Now you babble like a fool,

you’re a thief in my throat –

I can’t tell anymore where joy gives way

to grief and grief to joy.


Sack in my chest, common store of wishbones,

see how you greet the day?

Leaving the house in slippers?

Opening wider as if you could bear more?


Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2013 by Kimberly Cloutier Green. Reprinted from “The Next Hunger,” Bauhan Publishing, by permission of Kimberly Cloutier Green. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to Gibson Fay-LeBlanc, special consultant to the Maine poet laureate, at mainepoetlaureate@gmail.com or 228-8263. “Take Heart: Poems from Maine,” an anthology collecting the first two years of this column, is now available from Down East Books.

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