Fall 2006, Volume 23.1
Georgia Tiffany’s recent work can be found in such publications as Tar River Poetry, Flint Hills Review, Willow Springs, Mid-America Poetry Review, Rhino, and Hubbub. Her chapbook, Cut From the Score, was published in July 2005. She holds an MA from Indiana University and an MFA from the University of Idaho.
"…nothing save a little thread, descanted on by art and industry."
These are the wings of the lacemaker,
these are the lacemaker’s children,
these are the spreading intimacies of frost,
frivolous as pantylace or eyelets
of leaves fileted at the vein.
Winter’s come, no doubt about that.
I’ll sleep in this hum of stitches
freezing to glass, and wake
with pupil unstitched to see through,
filigree of cold that splays
into breaking light, tiny cracks
growing like ivy.
This is punto a fogliami, this is nuptial veil
or shroud, this is point
and counterpoint revisited
until the lace bug—having attached
to the midrib of sycamore leaves
her tiny tumors of egg, having taught them
to suck midsummer to frost—ceases all her art,
unhooking silver from interior silver,
wing from disintegrating wing.
Say snow falls on the Coeur d’Alene,
each abandoned leaf
a tiny boat of ice—that sound—
stones along the bank feathered white,
her black dog furred in white.
And say there is a drum
in the bird heart
that has clung to the sound all winter,
and she will bruise the heart
trying to save what she heard.
Or say the child does not hear
the ice or the drum
and wades into the river
to quiet the night that’s possessed her
for as long as she can remember.
The only sound left:
two hands at the piano
trying to live on Brahms,
something unconscious in the room
coffin blue and suspended
where moonlight arrives
in a dream of crows.
The warning: no song left, no whole song,
just flocks of paper wings
cut from the score.