Moth Wingsby Laura Ann Reed
When are we going home, he asks
like a child who’s had enough
of the windy beach,
the playground swings
He’s dying of pneumonia
and a failing heart.
Propped up in bed
between pale green walls
he glides in and out of delirium.
I take his hand, the skin cool and dry,
At the window a tiny moth
like a dusty saint
against the pane.
I rise from my father’s bedside
and go to the window
where I stare out at a starless night.
From across the room he calls,
as if the way out or in
is glassy and brief—
* * * * *
A different version of "Moth Wings" was originally published in Third Wednesday.
Laura Ann Reed taught modern dance and ballet at the
University of California, Berkeley prior to working in the capacity of leadership
development trainer at the San Francisco headquarters of the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency. Here work has been widely anthologized and published in
literary journals. Her chapbook, Shadows Thrown, is slated for publication
by SunGold Editions. A San Francisco Bay Area native, Laura currently resides
with her husband in western Washington.