Diana Pinckney has published poetry and prose in RHINO, Atlanta Review, Calyx, Iodine, Cream City Review, Cave Wall and other journals and anthologies. She has four collections of poetry: Fishing with Tall Women, White Linen, Alchemy and Green Daughters, released by Lorimer Press in April 2011. She lives and teaches in Charlotte.
April leaves its glory to the warmth
and whims of May, another dry summer
in the forecast. Doesn’t the end of any month
ache to return to beginnings – tender
green opening to white, white to green,
even though the stunning fullness
of a branch bent with pale blossoms
is never enough to bring back a son.
No breeze can gentle the knowledge
that somewhere in old Babylon
a father pleads for Allah, for any god
to grant him Abraham’s deliverance.
Bereft of angels, his sky instead
carries a stinging wind circling the man
forced by soldiers to lower a gun
to the crown of his son’s head,
a young informer broken
to the ground at his father’s feet,
his forehead pressed in dust
that will rise and cover everyone.
(Originally published in Green Mountains Review 20th anniversary double issue)