A Journal of Formal & Metrical Verse

Hands listen

To smooth the hair, to hush the lips
To squeeze the flesh below the hips

To feed the fire in small degrees
To test the strength of no and please

To seize the book, to mark the page
To slam it shut and bar the cage

To spring the bird, to melt the snow
To linger on what too few know

To smudge the ink, to white the lines
To blunt the edge and blur the signs

To skip the stone or fling it wide
To catch what falls or tries to hide

To blind the eyes, to free the will
To pull the trigger or keep still

By Marybeth Rua-Larsen

Marybeth Rua-Larsen's poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Measure, The Raintown Review, The Innisfree Poetry Journal, Tilt-a-Whirl and Two Review, among others. She lives on the South Coast of Massachusetts.