Poetry / Poets / Writers / Writing

Three Poems by Rae Spencer

Another Autumn

The garden isn’t dying this October
Not like my mother and father died
Decades apart in separate Octobers
The garden’s sleep is not eternal

It’s only a winter spell, gold leaves spinning
Like hypnotists’ watches blurring time
Until gourds droop on brittle vines
And bee balm slumps to the ground

Petunias fade on frail stalks
Mums stop breathing, asters fray
The ginger lilies’ nectar fails
Honeysuckle clots in the cold

And I share the yard’s exhaustion
Spread blankets of mulch
Anticipating the first frost

A dark, new moon
When the sky will lower
Like a lid as I descend

Into a vault of rumpled quilts
Where dreams wait
Specters of warm relief

Fragmented memories
Welcome regressions
Long, painless hours abed

Listening to the mesmerist’s murmur
Tomorrow tomorrow tomorrow
Tomorrow you must wake

And grieve


Tomorrow flees
As the world accelerates
And I become overweight
Heavier and heavier

Obsessively obese, immovably
Moribund, a dark gravity fed
By history and memory
Infant and child and eager teen

Girl, woman, and mid-life wife
All crushed
Into light
Photons orbiting

Inescapable conclusions
End-point confusions
Of identity and cause
Who am I and why

And what is this glittering dust
These arms full of stars
This spiral horizon
That envelops and clings

That I can’t fling off
Despite my silent, singular ways
Despite my infinite mass
And raveled, hourless days

Idea Web

At the hub rests a word
Spokes of satellite thoughts
Each radiating their own
Network of verb and reverb
A large “if” orbiting
The crux of the problem

Each sticky connection
Wheels the web wider
Until this stranded net
Casts into a rough draft
Of form, sprawled
Continuum of creation

Rotating toward revision
Where loose meanings
Snarl and drift, resist
Order until pinned and tucked
Cut and pasted, snipped free
And wound into new nuclei

Which pair and spawn
Spinning into the infinity
Of language that might say
Anything, hold every coherent
Communication in its silk
Snare of sound and breath



Rae Spencer is a writer and veterinarian living in Virginia. Her poetry has been published online and in print, receiving multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations. She can be found on the web at raespencer.com.



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