This poem is part of CavanKerry’s series for National Poetry Month. Every day in April, we post a poem from our community of writers.
Letter from Limbo
by Jeanne Marie Beaumont
If it proves possible, could you please send replacement
Victrola needles (tungsten), an atlas of your world (recent),
and a box of tailor’s chalk? Also, bishops for chess sets
(light and dark); they disappear at an alarming rate.
And, if it’s not imposing too much, some small
thing salvaged from the sea, even a piece of shell
or driftwood, that retains a scent of salt and scales.
Don’t think me monstrous for mentioning it, but
might you enclose a so-called rabbit’s foot?—
not for luck of course, that issue’s long moot—
it’s just that I so miss something soft at hand to pet.
I wouldn’t inconvenience you for all of heaven’s grails;
any item that’s too much bother above, I beg you forget.
From the forthcoming Letters from Limbo (Cavan Kerry Press, 2016). Originally published in New Letters.
Jeanne Marie Beaumont grew up in the Philadelphia area and moved to New York City in 1983. She holds an MFA in Writing from Columbia University and is the author of four books of poetry. Her first, Placebo Effects, was selected by William Matthews as a winner in the National Poetry Series and published by W.W. Norton in 1997. This was followed by Curious Conduct, published by BOA Editions, Ltd. in 2004, and Burning of the Three Fires, published by BOA in 2010. Her fourth book, Letters from Limbo, is forthcoming from CavanKerry Press in fall 2016. With Claudia Carlson, she co-edited the anthology The Poets’ Grimm: Twentieth Century Poems from Grimm Fairy Tales (Story Line Press, 2003).