The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Thursday and Collecting Dice

Red Wine Spills
By L. Ash Williams

I am hovering over this rug
with a hair dryer on high in my hand
I have finally, inevitably, spilled
red wine on this impractically white
housewarming hand-me-down from my cousin, who
clearly, and incorrectly, thought this was a good idea

With the help of a little panic,
sparkling water and a washcloth,
I am stunned by how quickly the wine washes out,
how I was sure this mistake would find me
every day with its gaping mouth, reminding me
of my own propensity for failure
and yet, here I am
with this clean slate

The rug is made of fur,
which means it died
to be here

It reminds me of my own survival
and everyone who has taught me
to shake loose the shadow of death

I think of inheritance, how this rug
was passed on to me through blood,
how this animal gave its blood
so that I may receive the gift of its death
and be grateful for it

I think of our inability
to control stories of origin
how history does not wash away
with water and a good scrub

I think of evolution,
what it means to make it through
this world with your skin intact,
how flesh is fragile
but makes a needle and thread
of itself when necessary

I think of all that I have inherited,
all the bodies buried for me to be here
and stay here, how I was born with grief
and gratitude in my bones

And I think of legacy,
how I come from a long line of sorcerers
who make good work of building
joy from absolutely nothing

And what can I do with that
but pour another glass,
thank the stars
for this sorceress blood
and keep pressing forward


It has been such a wrenching, exhausting day just keeping up with the news and I didn't pay a single moment of attention to the Repugnicans -- I went from looking at California wildfire maps to Gulf Coast hurricane maps, from being outraged at Washington football as the other piece of the sexual harassment story came out to being so proud of the athletes who refused to play in the wake not only of an entirely unjustified shooting but a murderous teenager with a gun being treated better by police than any number of innocent black victims, from trying to keep up with the latest rising covid numbers to being relieved that my county has now passed even stricter mask laws.

So yeah, apart from washing towels and cat blankets, finishing up an overdue writing project, and taking a walk in the late afternoon (it was a one-bunny, no-frog day), I did not get much done. We spent the evening after the Nationals game watching ESPN cover the sporting events not being played and listening to the players and coaches talk about what this fourth anniversary of Kaepernick's initial protest meant to them and why they felt it was so important to disrupt games as usual now. I hope everyone in coastal surge areas has gotten to safety. My brain is fried so here's some of my dice collection, which I'm afraid has grown in isolation despite having no one to play DnD with:

2020-08-26 18.50.14

2020-08-20 16.39.40

2020-07-21 15.39.17

2020-07-31 14.22.31

2020-08-19 10.51.35

2020-07-17 12.08.36

2020-08-21 15.48.43

2020-08-10 12.55.37

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