In loving memory of the inclusivity and resilience of Maya Angelou
By Marina Brown
I climbed four
floors of frozen stairs
a vase of roses
too close outside
your iron door.
I am still walking
if your hands
picking up wet glass
and red petals.
For Paul Breslin
By Marina Brown
- at the reading, Mr. Breslin mentions
the particular ironies of his failures
in vision / childhood roadblocks.
‘the first job of a poet,’ he says,
‘is to see,’ and I think of feeling
my way down the dark stairs of
an old wine cellar, the cool wall
steadying my slipping vertigo.
my father once restrained
a thrashing alcoholic,
who coughed an infection
into his right eye. the surgery
was by the ocean, and put to
use the cornea of a corpse.
today, his eyes are two
slightly different shades of blue,
but he still flies, and writes.
- this afternoon, a friend remarked at my
carelessness: my hips faced the world
in soft black cotton, only a few steps
from the window, blinds open and drawn
a quarter way up. I said they can’t see
us in here – that they’re never looking,
but she was unfazed and half-closed
her eyes. her body pleaded with
the tall white door-frame as she said
it’s so easy for us, from behind these
windows, to see them. it’s crystal clear.
- because I am aggravated by blank whiteness,
I have peppered my new apartment with pushpins,
lights and art and jewelry. but I scarcely notice
any maps or flower-bouquets when I shut the door
behind me in the evenings. I want to prove you
wrong, Mr. Breslin, and ask for your prescriptions,
and find for you all the night-blind poets, and explain
to you how it is, that I can no longer feel the things I see.
My name is Marina Brown and I’m a fourth-year international relations and Russian double major. I am a member of Phi Sigma Pi fraternity and Editor-in-Chief of Her Campus online magazine at UC Davis. I was born in Kharkov, Ukraine and raised in Stockton, California. I love reading and writing, exploring big cities, electronic and indie music, being outdoors, drinking tea, making new friends and hanging out with my cat.
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