Nightlight Ghazal


September 15, 2015 by The Citron Review

by Sarah J. Sloat


Up from smolder, smoke sits knitting its braid in the dark.
Tuck the tip into your locket, curled and frayed in dark.

I took sad receipt of your last letter, a scratch of ink
and ash borne on the edge of a spade in the dark.

Bury the memory in your little black dress. One bite
of bourbon and dirge becomes serenade in the dark.

All August I tended an intimate simmer. Fog caught
under glass, warmed over a flame that swayed in the dark.

Needle and thread lend sense to these evenings. I embroider
a train of long silence, come to fetch those waylaid in the dark.

A tinkling glass roams the house, seeking firm purchase.
Such ruined music is my nightlight, a lullaby played in the dark.


Sarah J. Sloat lives in Frankfurt, Germany, a stone’s throw from Schopenhauer’s grave. Her poems and prose have appeared in West Branch, Hayden’s Ferry Review and Beloit Poetry Journal. Sarah’s chapbook of poems on typefaces and texts, Inksuite, is available from Dancing Girl Press, which will also publish Heiress to a Small Ruin in 2015.


2 thoughts on “Nightlight Ghazal

  1. alexjosephy says:

    Beautiful. I love the subtle rhyming and imagery… ‘ash borne on the edge of a spade’ is wonderful.

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