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Holy Ghost
Brian Brodeur


My mother spreads tinsel snow over the kitchen sills,
sets the cedar manger in its place, arranging

the hollow plastic magi next to a cradle
displaying the baby Jesus missing an arm.

The little enameled figure of Mary kneeling
embraces something only she can see. Pinned to the banister,

our crocheted stockings sag. All afternoon
she listens to laundry click in the pantry dryer,

packing layers of chocolate cake and home-made cream
into Tupperware for the Heath-Bar trifle we love.

Light moves across the counter, almost touching her hand,
shattering over an open drawer of knives.

From "Snapshots 1," Other Latitudes (University of Akron Press, 2008).
Used with the author's permission.



Brian Brodeur was born in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1978 and has worked as a musician, teacher, waiter, editor, and library specialist. Author of the poetry collections Natural Causes (Autumn House Press 2012) and Other Latitudes (University of Akron Press 2008), and the chapbooks Local Fauna (Kent State University Press 2015) and So the Night Cannot Go on Without Us (WECS Press 2007), Brian also curates the digital archive "How a Poem Happens," an online anthology of more than 200 interviews with contemporary poets. A 2013 Walter E. Dakin Fellow at the Sewanee Writers' Conference, he is currently a George Elliston Fellow in Poetry in the PhD in English and Comparative Literature program at the University of Cincinnati, where he serves as an associate editor for The Cincinnati Review. Learn more about Brian at


Post New Comment:
Memories -- those evanescent moments that live within us and, more importantly, sustain us all through life. This captures that and more -- perfectly.
Posted 12/02/2014 08:58 AM
Thank you for the gentle poem that brought me peace tonight.
Posted 12/01/2014 10:01 PM
Larry Schug:
Any poem in which light plays a prominent role appeals to me. Good eye!
Posted 12/01/2014 08:07 AM
Don Colburn:
Fine poem, Brian. Thank you for it, and for the ongoing work, including How a Poem Happens (which I was honored to a small part of, a while back, for a poem about a certain workshop from hell). Cheers and all best. Don Colburn
Posted 12/01/2014 12:02 AM

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