Kerry Carnahan: “Cello”
This week we feature a previously unpublished poem by Kerry Carnahan. Carnahan was born in Kansas, lives in Brooklyn, and works in a converted Chiclets factory. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Ireland Review and North Dakota Quarterly.
Powerful yet fragile, characteristically temperamental, this costly instrument is said more than any other to closely approximate the sound of the human voice.
I spread my legs and drew it close.
Positioned my pinky, closed my hand.
Lifting elbows and chin I took a slow, deep breath
and from my thighs poured a sound so profound
everyone looked up as if I’d done it wrong.
When it was time to rotate, Ms. D motioned stay.
She wiped down the thin, beat-up wood with a soft cloth.
Then, taking my hand, she showed me how to rosin the bow as if
I could ever bear to hold it again.