“Mercy” by Suzanne Kessler

Suzanne Kessler


darkens the girl
in the green bag.
Mercy the child,
beautiful and deep.
Feed her dirt
with a copper spoon,
paint three finger holes—
a purple dolphin
in her small room.
Touch her curving leg.
Mercy the child,
the noose,
the chair, the table,
the empty space
she was.
Better dead
or blind
or deeply placed
than merciful.
Drive mercy
into bird throats,
tree hands,
the eyes of grasses.
Walk away.
Leave mercy
to the shovels
and fools.

from Rattle #37, Summer 2012
Tribute to Law Enforcement Poets


Suzanne Kessler (Police Officer): “I have always had a passion for writing and literature. As a small girl I was an avid reader and writer. Writing poetry has filtered in and out of my entire life. I wrote heavily in college and always shared my love of literature with my children (as an interesting aside: my daughter is a poet and my son a police officer). I made my way into law enforcement through a college required internship. I had never aspired to be in law enforcement, but fell into it while in school. I truly love my job, but still can’t resist my urge to write poetry.”

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