Allen ForrestBeaux Arts, WA, Shadows On The Lane (oil on canvas)

Even when my daughter sleeps she sings—
her eyes rushing back and forth
beneath the paper-like veil of flesh.

Sometimes she opens them
with a question,
but they are still locked into

the story of their release
and recoil back like a mussel
to a finger. Just enough light

lingers in from the windows
to illuminate her in her dark canvas,
enough for me to see the scrawlings

in my book—a dedication to some lost sister:
“Once,” the sister wrote, “We were the angels
in a Boar’s Head Pageant, lifting silk

from arms into wings. It was there
I had the epiphany that there are creatures
inside of us, who dwell in our warmth.”


Nicole Greaves