Clothesline

A Gift of Island Poetry ft. Dave Hickey

When your favourite shirt reaches out
to greet you, it’s like a more
comfortable version of yourself
has offered its sleeve, stripped of everything and
at ease with the angles
it recedes to. I step forward when
the clothesline leans back, and
wait for prevailing winds to drape me in
their directions. All week
I’ve been pinned to what others
send my way, and I want to excuse
what the indoor world has
made of me, resume my rightful
place among these restless sculptures of
polyester and cotton.
The clothesline shoulders them,
holds the house to the tree,
places my whole family
under its care, arms
open to our every imperfection.
Where else can you sit
and watch socks take flight, swirl off
with the ambition of early
aviators who hoped, if
only for a while, to fly by chute or
sail? They took to
the sky, then fell to earth, so
that’s where I choose to leave them.

—Dave Hickey

Dave Hickey’s poems most recently appeared in Safe Vehicles for a Dying Planet, a chapbook from Baseline Press.

Each month Bren Simmers selects a poem by an Island poet for The Buzz.