For Frank Stanford

I saw a dark carp moving beneath the water like a bruise
Moving indigo across a woman’s cheek

Close to her eye
In the days after he’s struck her

She was like another thing
The apple’s star

You can see the pure it-ness
of anything if you cut it right

If you are willing to know after that
After you see it

Its wholeness is over.

Frank, Cass says the names of the dead should not be invoked
Unless you bring them an offering

What would you like—
I have oranges, Queen Anne’s Lace

A mud hut, a mare, a fiddle
A chain, a wraith

A rotten log in forked light
Like a road I could show you

Sophie Klahr

Sophie Klahr is the author of Meet Me Here At Dawn (YesYes Books) and the chapbook _____ Versus Recovery (Pilot Books). Her work appears in publications such as The New Yorker, American Poetry Review, and Poetry London. She teaches a variety of poetry courses online and is a freelance literary editor—find out about current classes and more at