by Nancy Chen Long

“For the listener, who listens in the snow, / And, nothing himself, beholds / Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.” -Wallace Stevens

one day                 of silence

at a convent

others in the group think

about mary           i think

of emily

dickinson sequestered

in a way



so much more white here

than farther north                 so much more



There.                             There it is.

The knock at the door—lucid? lucre?

Any door will do.



Overthink—underfeel—overspeak. Underneath

a flood of cover, it is too easy,

too narrow, just this


the fullness of all hope

i plant in empty air

just a grasping

-refers to the words “retreat,” “white,”and “still” in Ice Gone by Teresa Stores

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