Blood Runs Warm

I guess it’s too late to live on the farm.
Already I can’t explain how terror
is born, tracks its way through open
doors like a loping child I can’t
kick aside. I stay quiet in the winter
dusk. I am in this field alone
because I am always here alone
and if I think to live on the farm
as poison I just sink deeper
into whatever season is next.
I pick a little crocus from the road
and present it to you like this
is a gift worth all winter suffering.
I shed my coats. I cry a little less.
Look, the gold sky each morning
is not real and it is not innocent.
If I walked out onto the farm
let’s say I believe the bad
in my blood comes clean,
that if tied to a tree I might
discover my own name.
Yes, I am a named thing.
My muddled heart a monument.
Really I am just a girl beneath
a heavy cloud but I sing to the farm
with my illness, kill all grasses,
deliver the unorchestrated ending
no one would have considered.


Anne Cecelia Holmes is the author of The Jitters (horse less press 2015) and the chapbooks Dead Year (Sixth Finch 2016), Junk Parade (dancing girl press 2012), and I Am A Natural Wonder (with Lily Ladewig; Blue Hour Press 2011). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Gulf CoastjubilatConduitDenver QuarterlyGuesthouseCosmonauts Avenue, and elsewhere. She is originally from mid-Michigan and now lives in Washington, DC, where she edits Jellyfish Magazine.