In the Darkened Pane
From my house I watch evening sift down
through the blackberry, winter-bare.
My father isn’t anywhere
I can touch, or brush dust and leaves
from the letters of a name
I once wanted to lose, wanting
to lose my history. I tried to step away
from the long disgrace—
ghosts and shadows handed
down. I was the only one of seven
pushed into the light who refused to die.
Night is now claiming
the juniper’s blue-green needles.
A woman’s face is unreadable
in the darkened pane. Harp strings
plucked by the wind’s fingers.
Laura Ann Reed, a San Francisco Bay Area native, taught modern dance and ballet at the University of California, Berkeley before working as a leadership development trainer at the San Francisco headquarters of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. Her work has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies in the United States, Canada and Britain. She is the author of the chapbook, Shadows Thrown, (Sungold Editions, 2023). Laura and her husband live in the Pacific Northwest.