Egg and Ever

Barnsmells of hay and chicken-shit,
dried white like gypsum
and dust-chokey to inhale,
underscore the hens purring
under the hot lightbulb.
Some shuffle and crane their necks
in a pecking hammer, bead eyes
blink—caviar in feathers—
while some are still, the low trill
and guttural sounds of the brooders,
soothing as they roost.

Hens plume over the eggs
like preening tea cosies,
warming perfect oval capsules.

Hold the candle to an egg:
candle mass
light and illumin,
I see life inside
the goo of potential,

This oval sphere a-glow
in the dim barn-light:
sunrise arcing across a small planet.

Earth-egg,
in a pocketful of constellations
scattered like straw bits,

holding you in my palm
I am candling the world.

~ Kate Marshall Flaherty

Kate Marshall first full books of poetry, entitled “Tilted Equilibrium” and “String of Mysteries,” are published by Hidden Brook Press (2006, 2008). Her latest chapbook, “Hobbeldehoy,” is published by Lyrical Myrical Press (2008). She won the 2006 Shaunt Basmajian Chapbook Award for her Chapbook, entitled “Unfathom”, won second prize in the 2007 Silver Hammer Poetry Award, and was shortlisted in 2006 for both the Pablo Neruda Award for Poetry and the Descant Best Canadian Poem. She has been published in journals such as Other Voices, THIS Magazine, Ascent Aspirations and Freefall, to name a few. In 2007 she was part of Canada’s National Random Acts of Poetry week, “poeming” people in hospitals, cafes, parks, yoga classes, ESL intensives, and in Parks and even Rec. vehicles! Rosie Fernandez of CBC followed her on her “poeming spree” in the Distillery District, which you can catch on CBC’s “Words at Large” podcast #77. She lives in Toronto with her husband John and three spirited children. Poetry is her lifeline.

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