A Million Moons

     for Bliss
You insist there must be two

moons since day-before-yesterday

we saw one to the east above the little yellow

house and today one hangs, more swollen,

over the horse pasture. You are so


sure, your memory lit by blue-gray

eyes alone, unblinkered by knowledge

of how the world revolves on an axis

and the moon is nothing but a shadow fool

culled and quartered.  You laugh


in your clover-picking way, counting green

balloons tethered to a stem.  Your breath

frees dandy lions of a roadside jungle,

snowy soul from a golden mane.


At only three-and-a-half, you have mastered

the dash and stroll of story.

I let you keep your two moons

which day after tomorrow may be three.


Perhaps no moon-views are ever

the same.  Of all my children and children’s

children, you were the first to speak.

The only one who claimed the moon and knew

there were many, maybe millions. Your faith


makes me brave, as night overtakes us,

knowing that when I am shadow

you will see me everywhere.

Joanne M. Clarkson’s full-length poetry collection, “The Fates,” won Bright Hill Press’ annual contest and was just published spring 2017. Her chapbook, “Believing the Body,” from Gribble Press appeared in 2014. Poems have been included in such journals as Poet Lore, Western Humanities Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Fjords Review and Rhino. Clarkson has Masters Degrees in English and Library Science, has taught and worked as a professional librarian. After caring for her mother through a long illness, she re-careered as a RN specializing in Home Health and Hospice Care.