Sheila-Na-Gig online


Wendy McVicker

Wendy McVicker has lived in the Hocking River floodplain for over 30 years, has been an Ohio Arts Council teaching artist for about 20 years, and is current poet laureate of Athens, OH. She shares an old house in an old neighborhood with her spouse and a Hemingway cat named Dora. She is missing her grown sons during covid.

Vanishing Act

Blood was the story
we couldn’t tell: cut lips,

loose teeth, quivering
knives and the hand up-raised.

Then the other blood, almost
black, flowing from deep inside

No one told us
about that, only

that it was better
to have it than not

Shame covered everything
with its hot yellow cowl

and cowed we scuttled
through crowded rooms, trying

to be invisible. In time
we let our own blood,

in time we stanched
its flow with hunger.

We wanted only
to disappear

into icy light,
the grated hum

of silence

The Bones are Blue

The bones are blue
and come from the sea.

Or gold, smoothed
(or roughened) by sand.

They are dream-bones,
not to be seen.

But she craves them,
she knows their beauty,

their latent power.
She hears their song

a distant strum
of gold wire,

a chime as dry
as desert wind.

The bones are vessels
for carrying emptiness

and she wants
an end to wanting