The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®

 

Andrew D. Miller

The Other Women

 

I have seen my father hold another woman
In his arms. She moaned over his back,
Her hands clutched his shoulders; her gasps
Mixed with the speechless rushes of his gasps,
Too urgent for shame. He held her by the back
Of the neck, raised her, limp.
The blood slowed and darkened out of
The crumpled hole in her scalp.
He picked away the bits of asphalt
Lay the sheered skin in place again.
The bicycle wheel still lay clicking.
The car idling. All she could do was scream:
The sirens called in back of the pines.
Neighbors gathered with names.
Their shadows covered them.
For me, he closed her eyes.
For my mother, he sat in the yard for days,
Saying how sorry he was.

 

 

Andrew D. Miller

Hands

 

When I was a boy, I watched blind men reading
Bibles and newspapers, just paperbacks,
Their fingers sliding over the braille pages,
Their eyes darting up in understanding glances
That saw nothing. It is like this with my hands.
They climb and ply each other, wrestling
Like sisters, beneath the light of my desire
Not to die. They were better, when you were young.
Kind hearted and willing to carry you,
They would fell at my side. You would catch them.
So they have held each of you so often,
So they have read your own hands and your faces
Like braille. Within the nativities of their palms,
Your girlish cheeks, your foreheads,
The scrub of your hair beneath their grips
Wrote stories I keep within the scroll of either fist.

 

 

 

ANDREW D. MILLER was born in Fresno, California. His poetry has appeared in such literary magazines as Laurel Review, Spoon River Review, and Iron Horse Literary Review. In addition, Mr. Miller is the author of Poetry, Photograph, Ekphrasis: Lyrical Representations of Photography from the 19th Century to the Present and the co-editor of The Gazer Within, the Selected Prose of Larry Levis. He lives in Copenhagen, Denmark, with his family.

 

 

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