Materializing the Gesture of Resistance by Becka McKay
Associate poetry editor Sara Ryan on today's bonus poem: "Materializing the Gesture of Resistance" is meditative, wrought with imagery, and absorbed in the visual awe of an eclipse. More cosmic than the dance between the Earth and moon, this poem communicates relief, closure, and the rebuilding of what has been broken.
Materializing the Gesture of Resistance
after Sharon Daniel
Last night I held a vigil for the lunar eclipse—
an awkward ritual, like sitting for hours
at the deathbed of someone you know well, but don’t
know how to talk to. Someone who would whisper
even angels don’t believe in angels to a child,
the direction of the rescheduled dark already
clear and cast in a dull red glow.
The earth’s shadow
was a mouth lifted in laughter or incantation
as it swallowed the moon.
our resistance is to build instead of break,
or to build after the breaking—to take up needle
and thread alongside the seam ripper, so that building
can be done with broken things.
In the darkness
I could not identify the immoveable
object, the stone god we wait on in vain.
When the moon
was all amber I felt relief, like a soldier
whose shift has just ended, or like a soldier
shaken from sleep whose shift is about to begin.
Becka Mara McKay directs the MFA in creative writing at Florida Atlantic University. Publications include a book of poetry: A Meteorologist in the Promised Land (Shearsman 2010) as well as several translations of Israeli fiction and poetry. She has work appearing in recent or forthcoming issues of Meridian, Cream City Review, Colorado Review, Isthmus, Posit, and Salamander. Her chapbook of prose poems, Happiness Is the New Bedtime, was just published by Slash Pine Press.