Luci Shaw


As if until that moment
nothing real
had happened since Creation

As if outside the world were empty
so that she and he were all
there was — he mover, she moved upon

As if her submission were the most
dynamic of all works: as if
no one had ever said Yes like that

As if that day the sun had no place
in all the universe to pour its gold
but her small room

– Luci Shaw, ‘Virgin’ in Accompanied By Angels: Poems of the Incarnation (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2006), 15.

Holding On


Seven days since the storm
snowed itself out and moved east, and still
the fat clots of white lodge themselves
in the twig forks. How cold holds!
This snow fruit crotched in place
by the black dogwood, snared by
a relentless frost that won’t
let go, won’t give in, even to the sun.
I fixed it in my camera’s eye.

On my dining table, in a wood
bowl, wait the five dried pomegranates
I saved for a friend. Decay has
forgotten them, their red skin
dried to tough brown leather,
the little teeth of sepals crimped
in a crown of sharp kisses that guards
the secret seeds, dark purses
for a blood that will never be spilled.

– Luci Shaw