Hope is the thing with
an important message, a pressing urgency
I reckon Hope’s entitled to. Hope says Hello,
my dear, and it goes from there: how are you,
hope you’re well, bit hot over here in Burkina
Faso, then Hope’s done with asking after
my chargers, my panes, the windstorm nudging
my touch-and-go, has no time for me
or my closely-monitored percolations. Hope’s
not perched; she’s pouncing, marooned
to the tune of $4.5 million. But Hope’s right:
her choosing me is a question she knows
she must answer. And big surprise: the Almighty
willed it, decided against her two sadistic aunts
because, Hope says, I’m different, won’t sell
her dead mom’s home to a Mr. Molson Steven
(though who can say for sure?). Hope’s favorite
language? Waiting to hear you soonest. Hope’s
solution: hide behind a bush so when I call
she can answer, or whatever (it’s against the law).
Just like staying in the prison, says Hope before
signing off in the name of a nearby privilege,
in the name of what I need from you is this.
Martha Silano is the author of four books of poetry, including The Little Office of the Immaculate Conception, chosen by Campbell McGrath as the winner of the 2010 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize and Reckless Lovely (Saturnalia Books 2014). She also co-edited, with Kelli Russell Agodon, The Daily Poet: Day-By-Day Prompts For Your Writing Practice (Two Sylvias Press 2013). Her poems have appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including Paris Review, Poetry, Orion, American Poetry Review, and North American Review, where she received the 2014 James Hearst Poetry Prize, as well as in many anthologies, including American Poetry: The Next Generation and The Best American Poetry 2009. Martha serves as poetry editor of Crab Creek Review, curates Beacon Bards, a Seattle-based reading series, and teaches at Bellevue College.
Leslie LaChance edits Mixitini Matrix: A Journal of Creative Collaboration, has curated The Wardrobe for Sundress Publications and written poetry reviews for Stirring: A Literary Collection. Her poems have appeared in literary journals, and her chapbook, How She Got That Way, was published in the quartet volume Mend & Hone by Toadlily Press in 2013. She teaches literature and writing at Volunteer State Community College in Tennessee, and if she is not teaching, writing, or editing, she has probably just gone to make some more espresso.