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Thursday, June 07, 2012


by Mary Krane Derr


Twice every century and a quarter perhaps,
a tiny, featureless black dot
of womanly love
crosses wholly without handholds
that gigantic thermonuclear boil
of masculine rage so intense,
unfiltered it will put
both of your merely,
shamefully human eyes out.

But what if instead
the patriarch here
is the brightest braggart
of nighttime stars
glimpsed and revealed
as a black dot so small
what could it matter any more,
how corrosively, compressively he hides
his surface of 90 breathless times
the pressure of the Earth’s
under such thick, offputting vortices
of hot fulsome sulfur.

Glimpsed and revealed
through, not against
the self-luminous
tremendum of cosmic
whirligig of lifegiving
generosity so ample,
you can’t look at her directly
even as you take natural faith
that the Brigid cross
of rushes spiraling above
your redorange painted door
minutely and gently reflects her
in its blessing of whoever
transits across your transom,
its protection of you and your hearth
from the flare of too much
fire all at once.

Mary Krane Derr is a poet, writer, and musician from the South Side of Chicago. Her poems "Prevents Conception/By Her Very Own Choice," "At This Address," and "Rubble Dream"  previously appeared in The New Verse News. The Brigid cross, a very old Irish custom, originated as an image of the sun. Mary's great great grandmother emigrated to the US from Tullow, County Carlow, not far from a well-known shrine to Brigid in County Kildare.