Death After an Early Morning Commute
Rebecca Macijeski

Death After an Early Morning Commute

The distant evergreens toward the back of the house
at 1260 Wilcox Avenue are silent with storybook snow.
Death turns her car into the driveway,
pauses as the engine’s rumbling dies,
steps out into the hushed gray.

She walks to the back door but stops a moment
facing the flat, white yard, wanders out
into the fresh snow, lowering herself
toward the ground. It’s wonderfully cold.
She lies down in the crispness. Sunlight blushes
onto the lawn. Her limbs spread wide,
quiet and small and shifting. When she sits up,

she sees what the neighbor girls have made.
A snowman, a snow mother, clumps of snow children.
Even a little snow dog with marbles for eyes.
She thinks of this family gathered
around a table eating their dinners.
What brilliant flashes must begin in their minds
as they settle to sleep, what joy in the parents
as they hold each other tonight and dream of melting here,
giving themselves back, puddling out of this very world.

Rebecca Macijeski

holds a PhD from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She has worked for Ted Kooser’s American Life in Poetry newspaper column and as an assistant editor for the literary journals Prairie Schooner and Hunger Mountain. The recipient of a 2012 Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Prize, she has contributed to The Missouri Review, Poet Lore, Barrow Street, Nimrod, and many other journals. She is Creative Writing Program Coordinator and Assistant Professor at Northwestern State University.