That White Sustenance

Anya Silver Click to

anya silverAnya Silver is the author of I Watched You Disappear (LSU, 2014) and The Ninety-Third Name of God (LSU, 2010).  Her work has been featured on “The Poet’s Almanac,” “American Life in Poetry,” and the Academy of American Poets and Poetry Daily websites.  She has been published in numerous journals, most recently in Image, Five Points, The Georgia Review and Southern Poetry Review.  She teaches at Mercer University and lives in Macon, Georgia with her husband and son.  Her website is

after Emily Dickinson’s Fascicle 640

Because of your final, fatal crack,
I’ve put you, golden handle, in the back
of the china cabinet, to which I, only,
hold the key—so no one knows you’re there
except for me, and even I forget from day
to day. But when I recall my lips sipping
from your rim, it takes my breath away.
I have to stop and open wide my eyes
to keep the rising tears inside my lids,
or scurry to the rest room for a while
so I can weep that you’re no longer here.
Never to be replaced with finer ware.
My breath is frost, the porcelain is white.
It rattles in my hands: the loss, the blight.