Home #Blue Nib Issues Issue 41 | March 2020 | ‘October’ by Mary Beth Hines

‘October’ by Mary Beth Hines

October

Papery orange
Chinese lanterns blossom—blaze
above cracked asphalt,

silver-flecked charcoal
tar spread as far as we two
can see from Goose Hill.

Baby’s finger points—
please, to touch, sniff, tongue tender
jack-o’-lantern skin.

I brush a veined leaf,
seize and squeeze a stem—a head
lopped off. The child squeals.

Hush, I scold, peeling
back four clasped leaves to reveal
the poison berry....

...

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