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Wednesday, August 12, 2020


by Sarah Dickenson Snyder

Pleated in every human minute
is the second of someone’s death—
the way a mother and daughter leap
from a warm wooden dock
into the Maine coast sea
and the mother is taken
in the sharpness of a second—
the shark’s desire to clench
what looked like seal skin. What if
she had not worn the wet suit, what if
they had decided to eat lunch before
the swim—sandwiches
& iced tea on the deck, what if
clouds obscured the sun & they hadn’t
needed relief from heat, what if
we knew the second of our leaving,
could stop ourselves
from diving in.

Sarah Dickenson Snyder has written poetry since she knew there was a form with conscious line breaks. She has three poetry collections: The Human Contract (2017), Notes from a Nomad (nominated for the Massachusetts Book Awards 2018), and With a Polaroid Camera (2019). Recently, poems appeared in Rattle, The Sewanee Review, and RHINO.