by Ann Robinson
Ann Robinson

Ann Robinson's work has appeared in American Literary Review, Connecticut Review, Fourteen Hills, New York Quarterly, Passager, Poet Lore, The Portland Review, RiverSedge, Sanskrit, Schuylkill Valley Journal, Spoon River Poetry Review, Willow Review, and Zone 3, among others.

After receiving a B.A. in English literature from Lindenwood University, she attended the M.F.A. program at the University of Arkansas. In addition to owning a farming operation in Arkansas, she is also a legal clerk in the Criminal Division of the Superior Court of Marin County, California. She has been the recipient of the John Spaemer Award for Outstanding Fiction, a Marin Arts Council grant, and a scholarship to study at a Hofstra University conference. She's also studied with Kathleen Fraser, Miller Williams, and Thomas Centolella.

After several weeks
I quit searching along the ravine behind my house,
the brambles and trail of cicada,
the creek that lead into neighborhoods
and late afternoon silence.

I went to shelters,
animals in cages, the size of dreams and wishes,
not unlike my cat who lived
as I lived in spurts of joy and depressions.

The bowl at the center of the yard
was empty except for rainwater, and I stood
in this same yard as a child,

alone among the calling whip-poor-will,
the jade glance of the great horned.

I learned the meaning of solitude,
of what I could not hold,

Each window in my house, unlit
as if someone had moved away a long time ago.

I imagine the place my cat is tonight,
listening for me as I listen for him,
among the stone edges of night.

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