Jane Attanucci grew up one of eight children in Pittsburgh. Her poems are published in Mom Egg Review, Off the Coast, Pittsburgh Poetry Review and Right Hand Pointing among others. She received the New England Poetry Club’s Barbara Bradley Award in 2014. Her chapbook, First Mud, was published by Finishing Line Press, 2015. Her first full-length book, A River Within Spills Light, is due for release by Turning Point in 2021. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
My Poet’s Eye at Dusk
Driving home from a movie
and early supper, Papa and I
slowed for a shimmery-tailed fox,
steady, confident stride,
crossing Old King’s Highway,
dinner dangling from its mouth.
His, hers, who knows?
Aren’t we all the same,
seekers of sustenance
in this abundant season—
blue bulbous hydrangea,
arching vermillion lilies,
layers and layers of green
as July’s silver light
thins to gray.
Glenn Close, Viola Davis, Bette Midler—
my sister, Jackie, has a long list of celebrities
she’s met in the rush & bustle of her annual trips
to New York City with her husband.
In Takashimaya Midtown, she spotted Meryl Streep
in the first floor garden. As Jackie tells it,
She saw me and looked scared I was going
to approach. Which, of course, I was.
I stopped myself when I saw her face.
She slipped out the revolving door.
I wonder if Jackie sometimes searches
for our mother in crowds, like I do—
Mom on her honeymoon with Dad
in Times Square, Mom smoking alone
as he tries to hail a cab, Mom climbing
the steps of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
If she could come back to life,
for even the briefest moment,
what unexpected terror of recognition,
ache of the light.