Thursday, 30 March 2017


by Elise Stuart

Reached down into the bed of iris,
long neglected since their spring blooming.
The slim, brown leaves,
pulled from their summer bed,
like trying to hold hands with a ghost.
Slender wrists,
some barely attached to the ground.

My friend left for the other side in June.
When I last saw her, she was barely
connected to earth.
Watching her sleep,
she resembled an old man, a newborn babe,
a wisp of herself,
the way she held her hand, her little finger, curled in.

Couldn't pull her back,
or wake her from whatever dream she was in.
I only wanted to watch her,
and let love be the silent language
that moved,
cried, sang—
between us.

* * * * *

Elise Stuart moved to Silver City, New Mexico in 2005. She came to know the desert as a place where small yellow flowers grow in arroyos, fed by underground streams, where shallow rivers and occasional rains nourish every living thing. In the stark beauty of the desert landscape, she found her home. When she became Poet Laureate of Silver City in 2014, she envisioned giving young people a way to express themselves, so developed and facilitated numerous poetry workshops throughout Grant County. Students wrote their poems on muslin "poem flags," which are currently displayed throughout the community. Elise Stuart is the author of Another Door Calls.

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