“Spring” by Sara Springer

Sara Springer


It’s not a tender season, after all.
Those leaves are green enough to fuck you up.
Those winds are strong enough to tear you down.
In spring, even the killers roam the town,
the murderers are kicking up their heels.
One old man with jail food in his beard
and razor-wire lacerations like
racing stripes all up and down his sides
escaped his cell in thunder-stormy spring,
made his way past houses, bushes, things
that you and I associate with life.
And since the spring is brutal to the old,
the man was caught and set to rot in stone.
Some say that he is there today, his skull
empty but for bullets and their holes. 
Spring is not a song you want to sing.
Each tender morning’s shot with roadkilled squirrel,
each setting sun’s a blood clot that the world
coughed up and swirled back down the drain of night.
Spring is not a season that you write
verbatim as it’s told. You draw it tight
like skin that dries on racks, and scrape it clean.
You write the spring that you wish you had seen.

from Rattle #56, Summer 2017
Tribute to Poets with Mental Illness

[download audio]


Sara Springer: “My mental illness has made it essential for me to work through emotions and problems in words. There are little messy conversations in my head, and there are clear ones on the paper. Poetry is a way to put order, clarity, and rhythm into a world that’s very up and down, at least inside my own head. Other people’s poetry excites me when it follows the ups and downs of the poet’s world; mine excites me when it can make some part of mine clear.”

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