Crossing

Written By: Jeanne Marie Beaumont

In a city that was not my own I crossed
a bridge over the river and wandered a long while.
Later, I crossed another flowers had been
woven around. Something was going on today
in the city. It rained. Stopped raining. Rained again.
I found a gallery of lost women, their dresses shrunk
to doll-size, their non-names engraved on plaques.
Leaning over my coffee, I listened as story led to
story. I bought a movie ticket and waited in a red seat
for the feature presentation. In the film a woman
set herself afire. Two patrons walked out. After,
I browsed spices and baking supplies—enticing
but I didn’t bite. I crossed the river and searched
through moldering books in a back room. I viewed
an ancient scroll that stretched for yards, each episode
rolling to the next. I knew the city was a repository
I had only begun to tap. I knew the bridges sutured
the river, that I kept crossing between the dead and
the living. Much digging was underway. I recalled
the phrase from an old tale predicting the bright sun
will bring it to light. Walkers every day tamped down
with their feet what squirmed again to the surface
demanding to be recognized. One day of wandering
was coming to an end. It was the inescapable labor
of time—the city would unearth my secret name
and soon be summoning me back. When my cup
was served, a heart steamed toward me from the foam.

Jeanne Marie Beaumont

Jeanne Marie Beaumont has published three books of poetry, including most recently, Burning of the Three Fires.

Her fourth book, Letters from Limbo is forthcoming in fall of 2016. She has been on the poetry faculty at Stonecoast since 2007.