Sphinx
Angie Macri

Sphinx

Of the azaleas that he has chosen,
the hydrangea with its small eyes,
myths of those blinded
and those who quarreled,

I am the daughter with small eyes.
I am the archer, the child
with questions. I am the girl
who runs away, praying

to take root someplace.
If it is white lined, he might
see it. If it is rustic, he likes
to look at how it is made.

Walnut has a fine grain.
Catalpa hangs with bait.
The pawpaw bears fruit
that, timed right, tastes

of cream. Do you believe me?
Or has that been wiped clean?
We walk down the lane
to the wild cherry, and he can’t

find its name. But he remembers
Carolina and the mountains
he found by chance one spring,
the kite we flew in the meadow,

with its paper tail, its string.
Do you remember? he asks me,
beloved daughter of his body,
woman’s head on a lion’s frame.

Angie Macri

is the author of Underwater Panther (Southeast Missouri State University), winner of the Cowles Poetry Book Prize, and Fear Nothing of the Future or the Past (Finishing Line). Her recent work appears online at Arkana, Terrain.org, and Waccamaw. An Arkansas Arts Council fellow, she lives in Hot Springs.