Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
Open Hands
By H. L. Davis
ANSWER, now you watch the full stalks of ironweed break
And carry their red seed among the leaves; and spray
Beats them from the wind.
                “I wish that sowing ironweed seed,
With children bringing me full stalks, running to the orchard        5
To strip seed for me, took my time now. Their wet hands!
This grass, white-headed because the seed’s threshed, raked
The sand rising when I imagined love, when I was
Too proud for children. Go down again—they are grown—
You sand moving, you sharp duning sand, sing against        10
The dead grass-blades, and fall here and cover me. Fill my hands.
Dry me out like dead bird-quills, milk my strength still. I know
That spirit is come to an end. There is no pain.”
You talk to the sand: and let me go, let me go.
When the wind rose I thought that spirit knew of the sand        15
And desired voice and hands; and that I knew that strength.
But your words hold me too close to my own grief,
And make me remember what I desired, and know.

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