Tonight I’m featuring another Mutabilis Press poet, Kat Gilbert. I love the way this poem focuses on the beauty in a situation whose subtext is laced with darkness, and in the way it celebrates a small and simple object for its tremendous importance. The poem pretends to be straightforward, but its depth cannot be concealed.
What Does Love Look Like?
My mom taught me
how to draw a heart for the first time
in the dirt outside the Max stop.
All the while, busy shoppers walked by, stalled
by our day’s homeschool lesson.
Her own heart was broken as she shepherded
my brother and me from errand to errand
on foot—a necessity even if it was raining
and her head was pounding
for the fourth day in a row—a dull roar
at this crossroad.
Still, she bent down to join
two curved lines in the middle with her forefinger,
over and over again so we could see
what love looks like.
Go to this month’s first Poem-A-Day to learn how to participate in a game as part of this year’s series. You can have just a little involvement or go all the way and write a cento. I hope you’ll join in!
Kat Gilbert is a student-teacher in the Portland Public School district. She teaches Language Arts and is studying at Portland State University. Kat grew up in NE Portland, OR and so the city and the many surrounding natural trails around it color her world. When she moved to the city from San Antonio, TX the city had changed a lot but thankfully some important places are the same. When she isn’t teaching, writing is her priority. She began writing poetry while studying in Ireland with Washington’s 2007 Poet Laureate, Samuel Green and Poetry Ireland/Friends Provident National Poetry Competition winner, Tony Curtis. She then received her B.A. in English from Seattle University.