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Genoways, Ted / Anna, washing
(2001)

A letter from Eagle, Alaska,   p. 15


Page 15


A Letter from Eagle, Alaska
My dearest Marie,
                 The nights grow longer.
Abe leaves well before the sun and returns
after the candle at our bedside burns
itself out.
          I would think him a ghost were
it not for his mud-caked clothes. I have learned
to judge his success by the stains.
                                Treasures
lurk in black sand. Abe once whispered those words
as if we were in church, or new lovers.
I rarely see him now, just a washer
full of his clothes and a leather pouch, pursed
by a drawstring.
                In my dreams, my body turns
to sand, shifting in streambeds. I wait for
Abe to smile, seeing some part of me glitter.
I wake to him gone.
                   Please write,
                               Your sister.
'5


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