Two Poems by Anita Lahey
"The Foe" and "Jab."
Illustration by Jonathan Reid Sevigny.
Face her in the glass, steamed up.
Eyes alight, left foot forward, arms
up: Raise your prayer wall
against night yet-to-come. One
calamity among countless maybes,
her left hook smashes jaws and levees,
batters the temple, makes way for the flood.
She’ll hurricane you off the ropes.
Tie up the cables to the gut.
Stuff riches in your fists, save,
scrunch: each muscle twists
in its slick warm notch, the knee
a hinge, greased to let loose
its wrecking ball. Your side-kick out.
Your jab-cross-jab in situ. It fits you—
lowered chin, loose shoulders, bound wrists—
this new Tao between action, reaction, lure
versus lunge into a roundhouse faith.
She knows every fragile somebody you love.
She deflects every counter and attack
you mime and mime; you’re clouding her
with could I? will I? Pow and kabam
more than reflections and ...