Two Poems

El'na Rivera







Muguet, or Lily of the Valley


Sitting in a car, cradled next to the poem,

I am small, white and bell-shaped, driven by

the letter of leaving, imprinted, looking back

at this anonymous wish made from a window.


Time, driven away from a childhood, a shape

whose words had been clear, square-shaped, while

another's pattern pressed into a pillow of French,

later washed of sensual doors in another form.


Blanketed by fantasies of leaving it all behind -

the beggar of abandon, a detritus flower, a syllable

falling from a mother, who marked this cheek

with red memories. A bouquet of busy, the lonely,

that throughout tiny translation of selves,

accumulates a word in English, finished.





In the Native Fold


In the native fold of a stylized shape

hangs a leaf form,

a word

attests to making the wound.


Detach the image from its background

of birch, and wolves enter my stomach,

decorate my insides

in gold and silver spirals.


Beads of sweat clasp this form,

it goes to war and wears "the same dress as men."

A powerful predator,

this ornament, this 'adorable' feline.


In characteristic posture she embroiders

the bone of her nomadic figure

in the gold torque around her neck.

I am the round shape, the clasp


dear, preserving her hooves

in my swift strong attack.

A stag tattooed on the grave,

marks this date, this 'bait.'








Kater Murr's Press, Piraeus Series, 2005. 
Poems copyright - El'na Rivera, 2005
Cover photograph by Russell Switzer; copyright - Russell Switzer, 2005