The Weavers

by Nijole Miliauskaite

Nijole Miliauskaite

after school a hard hand
gathered us to the sewing shop
a flock of young girls
with children's faces
bindweed at our waists
all winter we sewed white
shirts for orphans
white calla lilies blossomed
in hothouses beneath the glass
for the bride's bouquet
for the wreath of spruce
for emptiness
melt the distant snowdrifts
with your hot sighs
melt the ice
in the sewing shop's mirror
it alone is our secret
understood our dreams
I watched
through the windows, through cracks, through fences
there, beyond the river,
was a world locked to us
the night nurse
black wings embracing the sleeping children
listens drowsily to the storm
and the heavy keys ring at her waist
heavy eyelids
envelopes filled with sand and heat
gnaw the eyes, a clump of frozen earth
locks up the feet the hands
you know
the look of cold steel
you know why we are called
by the dark precipice of the window
let no one
turn and look back
let no one point for another
let no whispering
drag itself after you
like a dirty bouquet-ribbon full of holes
the sleep of lethargy, Franz K.
bend closer
I'll whisper a secret
a large ear
it hears
what I mumble in sleep, sleepwalker
a hand
with long thin fingers
burrows through my brain, searches
for the hidden the forgotten
it is not possible
for you to hide beneath
the sky
so much the better, so much the better
I want to be an embryo again
twinkling each night
above the sunken lake

Last updated January 14, 2019