Post Road Magazine #14

Anna Catone

Wanting a Child

I didn't hit her,
the truck behind me slowing down, lights
in the rearview mirror like a loaded gun in a closet.
The woods, a rusted bike in the grass on the hillside
where people dump their trash,
turned-over grocery cart—
wheels twisted round, spinning.

Here, where nature almost stops,
white scattered over her reddish coat,
hoofs like a girl in heels, eyes all water,
then her fleece-white tail
cut loose among the trees,
the creek bed. The fawn
slides out of the dark
like a child might,
not yet shot through.


The Parachute

All of us girls liked to drag it out in gym.
We stood in front of the huge, unfolded umbrella—
a house undone. The coach blew the whistle,
and we reached down for it—

white silk in our fingertips—a whitecap, a wave,
just before we pulled it up over our heads and ran under.
We hunkered down. A dome like a church or a temple formed inside.
A lake poured over the gymnasium floor. Cypress, reeds, pitch
to hold our boat together. Wind in our sail.
The whistle blew, and we grabbed on,

tore the roof off. One fluttering motion
and we were outside. (Our shadows already on the hardwood floor.)
We dropped it: the largest piece of paper.
The girl next to me is alive with giggles;
she's ready to start the world up,
drop from a dangerous height.



Anna Catone received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University.  She holds an MA from Middlebury's Bread Loaf School of English and an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.  She lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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