michael mack poem "becoming annie"
who wakes in a wrinkled cotton nightie.
She watches a luminous hand
touch her ticking wrist.
Becoming Annie, who groans and walks
to a medicine chest, rummages for her rosary,
finds a Band-Aid box of buttons and dimes,
one gown propped in the closet.
Are we becoming Annie?
Trailing water, she bends for the stairs
and squeaks down the banister,
dropping lilies of tissue paper.
Barely aware we could be Annie
we cannot remember what to forget,
pray to ourselves in baby voices,
lose names, faces, keys,
till one night we see Annie
sailing out our doorway,
gown lisping over the porch
sidelong to the street.
May a city rise in the gleam of our breathing.
May love brush its sudden
feathers on our bodies,
our running feet.
– michael mack
From the judge's award letter...