After Hearing Mozart’s “Sonata Semplice”
Jane O. Wayne

After Hearing Mozart’s “Sonata Semplice”

Innocent enough, at first—
the spritely theme staying with her from the car
            all the way through dinner, but try to stifle it,

and the next morning there it is again—
the opening passage nagging, like announcements
            in an airport. When she leaves the house,

the loud cicada chorus doesn't drown it out either.
And not just sound, dreams, too, pursue her.
            Often at night, she ends up circling empty streets,

like a child tracing a maze in a puzzle book, searching
for a central square in an old-world city.
            Then without warning, she might find herself

speeding down a highway in blinding snow, straining to see
the right exit sign—the scene familiar as the room
            she sleeps in. What's next—her thumb rubbing

a rough fingernail, a tiny pebble filling her shoe, or maybe
an old dispute replaying at random? She gets no further
            than a mussel from its shell.

Jane O. Wayne

has published four poetry collections: Looking Both Ways (University of Missouri Press), which received the Devins Award for Poetry; A Strange Heart, which received the Marianne Moore Prize and the Society of Midland Authors Award; From the Night Album (Pecan Grove); and The Other Place You Live (Mayapple Press).