Poem for today – The Bath

During April, National Poetry Month, we are posting a poem a day. Our final poem is by local poet and MPS teacher Josh Coben. Mr. Coben is the author of Maker of Shadows and winner of the X.J. Kennedy Poetry Prize 2009. Thank you Mr. Coben. And thanks to all who submitted works that mattered to them. Keep reading!

The Bath by Josh Coben

In the sink I wash you,
slippery as a dish,
and wrap you, kicking,
in a towel.  It’s you

I’ll keep, and yet this pool
of shifting molecules
that holds your slough
will easily outlast
your lone configured self.

Shattered, rearranged
in aquifer and cloud,
water will stay: encased
in grass, expressed as milk
into the calf, infusing life
after life indifferently.

Why can’t you, too, pass
through earth’s avatars
unscathed?  Must one
be tepid to endure,
partial to none?

I pat you dry and peer
into the basin, find
my features floating there
and then my arm, piercing
its own unsteady image,
reaching in to open the drain.

You can view a list of previous poems here.