“Salt Lies Sprinkled” by Irena Praitis

Irena Praitis


We sat, heads down, in silence.
The last meal, finally, a failure.
Any words left to be said
Were no longer needed for meaning.

We thought we’d tried as much as we knew how.
As if communion at table,
Crumbs scattered before us,
Would be enough to keep us whole.

A few stray leaves hit the screen door.
The neighbor’s child pizzicatoed out a little Mozart.
You’d wondered earlier about the coming rain.
I’d put the house plants out in hopes of it.

Salt lies sprinkled on a dark table cloth.
A quarter ring from a glass of milk shines thin and wet.
This could have been the sky before us
If only we were looking up.

from Rattle #17, Summer 2002

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