A Day in June

Poem by Alexander Pepple

Sister, sister, the one I never had—

spilled out of her skin. Saffron to crimson hue

shadowed the grin of silver pails; her bed,

left on log bridge through marsh, freckled with dew

like wood pillars that prop our bungalow

on still water. She, who calls for my aid

when all is dark beyond the salt wind’s throe—

her throat earth-brown, her hair the twisting braid

of mangrove roots—would be woman today.

Outside our door, neighboring schoolboys chilled

by their recollections reengage to spray

the moss-scented rainwater that once filled

vessels when she transposed beyond our house.

Mother clings to the yellowed baby blouse.


American Arts Quarterly, Summer 2013, Volume 30, Number 3