Blue Moon

Look, Mom, how the second full moon this month rises
through its purpler side of the dusk not quite a ghost

because of the colour of its face—purplish now
as if it has had as hard a time breathing as

Granpa did. Oh I know you can’t sit down beside
the moon on its bed, hold its hand, feel its forehead

—not while riding along the highway on the way
to the bus I’ll catch back to the city. Perhaps

that’s good. Perhaps we should keep away from the way
the moon’s also losing its colour. But it’s much

prettier than the way Granpa lost his—and no
need to worry about burying it. See how

it rises without all that, how its face gets pink
as the blanket Granpa had on his bed the last

time I visited. You know how he always said
What can I do you for? You know how it put you

at ease? Well tonight, Mom, the moon’s here, easily
breathing a similar light out into the air.

Questions and Answers

What inspired “Blue Moon”?

Well one of those not too rare months on the calendar that’s long enough for a second full moon to fit into, such a month came along shortly after my mother’s father, my Grandfather, had died. It was beautiful, that second moon, rising in the east while dusk lingered in the west, and that beauty felt both easy and connected to my memories of Grandpa’s charm. So I wanted to share my small comfort in that feeling with my mother in her mourning.

What poetic techniques did you use in “Blue Moon”?

I tried to keep the language direct and the lines so long they might almost pass for prose sentences from a letter. So the more poetic strategies would be irony, rhyme and simile.

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