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Summer Cabin
Emily Strauss


Dry clock ticking in the empty hall
Rattles like old bones, a dull dusty
Beat like the clicking of false teeth

In a withered crone sitting
At her window watching
Magpies in the garden.

Clock heart sounds hollow
Its pinewood box a casket
The body shrouded in silk
Wheels spin imperceptibly

Still alive but comatose
Faint pulse all that’s left
In the silent house closed
For winter. Snow gathers.

The rooms echo lingering time
Hours stop finally as the chain
Drops heavily, carpet absorbing
Its last fall, now quiet the clock
Waits, paused between midnight
And spring as snow seals the door
Until the first ruffled crows return.


© by Emily Strauss.
Used with the author’s permission.


Emily Strauss has an M.A. in English, but is self-taught in poetry, which she has written since college. More than 550 of her poems appear in a wide variety of online venues and in anthologies, in the U.S. and abroad. The natural world of the American West is Emily’s usual framework; she also considers the narratives of people and places around her. Emily is a retired teacher and lives in Oregon with a small dog and a black cat.


Post New Comment:
Carol Hauer:
Posted 09/30/2011 09:55 AM
The clock as bones, false teeth, it's heart in a casket--well done! It clutches at me.
Posted 09/30/2011 07:46 AM
Donal Mahoney:
The quality of writing in this poem is simply superb. One can only imagine the number of revisions it took to write a poem like this until its remarkable sound and simplicity were achieved. I hope to see more work by Emily Strauss on Your Daily Poem in the future.
Posted 09/30/2011 06:49 AM

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