Gateway Part 10
Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, Contest Judge
from the Tao Te Ching
10. Without opening your door/ you can open your heart to the world.
the cracks in the window frame. I think of my friend's voice
right after she lost her mother. I think of driving too fast
then stopping to be overwhelmed by the stillness.
In the small hours when I wake on the sleeping porch,
the wind cracks open my dreams: a shtetl in Poland
where my grandmother woke as a child,
sat up beside her sleeping sisters, and listened
to the wind climb the house. Her heart was open
for that moment, only days before that world
collapsed, and she found herself far away
without ever having opened the door to leave.
We have thousands of stories to tell of her unhappiness
but what do we know of the moments that defied
her history? Of the world her heart took in willingly?
The heart isn't a hinge between inside and outside,
who you love and who you don't even know.
Showing you there never was a door to begin with,
Editor’s Note: The Poet’s Notes for “Gateway” may be found in the introduction to the first part of this ten part poem http://eretzsongs.blogspot.com/2016/08/special-feature-gateway-part-1-by-caryn.html. “Gateway” was previously published in The Midwest Review.