Two Rooms

Leslie Adrienne Miller | Poetry

We made a child in one, plans
against disaster in the other.

Leaves curled beyond every window
with the same casual alarms,

and somewhere a peacock, yes,
a male with a mewling cry,

hopped into a fir, dragging
its impossible skirts

while we closed the one door
between us and nursed

the wound to what each of us
had heretofore called a self.

We made meals in one, couplings
in the other, ecstatic, cross,

medicinal or comic, took turns
at the one sink, stations at table.

Out of place and time in the damp
scrub, that brilliant bird was one

of two, and his molten breast shone
like coal; his diadem rocked

on a tiny skull. No one had changed
a parent’s diaper yet, swabbed

the dry lips or divested of holdings
with too many stairs. The mountain

outside beckoned to be climbed,
and the last days of summer

wandered in and out like pets
who know that change,

always just out of view,
has a scent and a hue,

and when it breaches one room,
the other fills too.