Evening Prayer Sara Parrell

Teach me life between
no voice and scream.
Teach me how drums
listen to the horns, how
horns beg the question.
Teach me to crave city’s
late summer heat, folded
umbrellas tipped into
corners. Teach me to see
crows circle the silver
wheelbarrow. Teach me
your ways with those crowds
gutting homes to the studs.
Teach me pitcher, water,
the slow pour over a stranger’s
hot neck, swollen feet. Teach me
it’s not enough to make my way
to the door and knock. Teach me
what to say when the door opens.
Teach me to sing like a jay
lost in the pinewood, a woman
coaxing her child in for dinner.
Sara Parrell won first prize in the 2008 Poetry Center of Chicago’s Juried Reading for her manuscript Psalms of New Orleans. Her poetry has appeared in Crab Orchard Review, qarrtsiluni, and the 2013 Cowfeather Press anthology, Echolocations. Sara is faculty at the UW-Madison School of Nursing, and a member of the Madison public schools’ mental health consultation team.