Suzanne Manizza Roszak

Sing for the tinny gramophone in the parlor,
for the suitcases’ torn handles and small,

sharp teeth. Sing for the sacks of grain in
the closet, the water pitchers in the icebox,

rag rug spoiling the plastic smoothness
of the floor. Walk into this house and you are

immediately in the kitchen, a small woman’s
smaller hand on your arm, the corners of her

mouth stretching in resistance to the tyranny
of consonants. Ten steps and you are out

the door that only company would submerge
in shade, the brevity of the place as astounding

as the bright heat of an August noon. Sing
for all that. Watch me become smaller

and more liquid with every refrain until
the noises end and I can manage to pursue

rebirth, reconstitution: breathless and
bargaining, a body making itself over again.

Suzanne Manizza Roszak is an assistant professor of English at East Carolina University. Her poetry has appeared in Colorado Review, Crab Orchard Review, Poetry Northwest, and Third Coast.