sign up to receive a new poem-a-day in your inbox
a woman peeling apples, with a small child
straight off the blade she hands it over her small hand the long peel for divination the long peel hissing like a boa constrictor how long it must take to dress the daughter in all of her gathers & kirtles & caps her pinafore pockets full of oyster shells yes what she can't see what hurts her eyes & like a genre painting I'll include the image of another painting or a mirror or a dog how Vermeer preferred women working alone how this also uses natural light in an otherwise unlit interior when the old woman peels apples she's surrounded by circles & keeps her book in good light & when she is young it's a rich brocade steady hands a hairband & a little jut of thought in her jaw (see also dutch quiet )
Pattie McCarthy is the author of five books of poetry: Marybones (Apogee Press, 2012), L&O (Little Red Leaves Press, 2011), Table Alphabetical of Hard Words (Apogee Press, 2010), Verso (Apogee Press, 2004), and bk of h(rs) (Apogee Press, 2002). She received her MA in creative writing from Temple University in Philadelphia and has taught at Loyola University, Queens College of the City University of New York, and Towson University.