Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry: Coming Home

Edited and introduced by Wesley McNair, Maine Poet Laureate

In today?s poem Elizabeth Tibbetts of Hope proves that warmth and love are possible even in a cold Maine winter.

Coming Home by Elizabeth Tibbetts

Oh, God, the full-faced moon is smiling at me
in his pink sky, and I?m alive, alive(!)
and driving home to you and our new refrigerator.
A skin of snow shines on the mountain beyond Burger King
and this garden of wires and poles and lighted signs.
Oh, I want to be new, I want to be the girl I saw
last night at the mike, sex leaking from her fingertips
as they traveled down to pick at her hem.
She was younger than I?ve ever been, with hair cropped,
ragged clothes, and face as clear as a child?s.
She read as though she were in bed, eyes half closed,
teeth glistening, her shimmering body written
beneath her dress.  She held every man in the audience
taut, and I thought of you.  Now I?m coming home
dressed in my sensible coat and shoes, my purse
and a bundle of groceries beside me.  When I arrive
we?ll open the door of our Frigidarie
to its shining white interior, fill the butter?s
little box, set eggs in their hollows, slip meats
and greens into separate drawers, and pause
in the newness of the refrigerator?s light
while beside us, through the window,
the moon will lay a sheet on the kitchen floor.

Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry is produced in collaboration with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. Poem copyright © 2002 by Elizabeth Tibbetts. Reprinted from In the Well, Bluestem Press at Emporia State University, 2002, by permission of Elizabeth Tibbetts. Questions about submitting to Take Heart may be directed to David Turner, Special Assistant to the Maine Poet Laureate, at poetlaureate@mainewriters.org or 207-228-8263.