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Losing Things

Penelope Shuttle

Wild with sleep and sleeplessness

I kept losing tables, cities,

trees, churches, palaces, entire countries


Where was Egypt?

How could I have misplaced Poland?


When there was only one table left in the world,

breakfast tried to cheer everyone up –


I lost autumn,

ageless autumn, mislaid winter,

all summer I searched for spring


I stole some shadows from my one remaining forest,

some rain from El Nino


I’d appreciate your help

in snatching an hour of lost light back from the moon and stars,


but I guess that’s not going happen

in my lifetime


From Painted, Spoken No 15 (2007)