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Dear Amanda, from the Marble

by Amanda Boyanowski-Morin

You carried me, a lichen colored sphere, the summer before you carried ocean smoothed stones in your pocket to place on graves of loved ones. You brought me to camp everyday in the pocket of your Wal-Mart cutoff overalls in a frayed dixie cup. We saw each other’s worlds upside down, reflection warbled at the sides. I remember you changing my habitat every day, selecting new tufted clover flowers and blades of grass. Occasionally you would bring me out to show to a child Look, it’s a whole universe as you spread your palms wide. They would laugh and go back to making plastic pony bead necklaces that bothered you because The patterns are wrong. They just string up anything. No one understands it need to make sense. You would sit at the picnic table and scratch the blistered paint, trying not to speak to anyone about the things you were realizing a girl shouldn’t say aloud. By the time Arts and Crafts time was finished you rarely finished though the materials were all laid out before you.


Start in the middle

build                                                    out

uniformly                                              on                                            each side




Once, you tried to be like the other girls.

Working over an over to just string beads

at random, making sure there was no

discernable pattern.


It choked you all day.


I saw you from my aqua glass pulling

and tugging and I knew right before you

felt it give way that it was broken

in ways unfixable for you.


 Later that day I saw you pick up moths

with withered wings, drying wasps

fragments of bugs, the leftovers of summer

 to bury in soft dirt of the baseball field.


When it rained you watched the droplets

collect on blades of grass to see

the world upside down – held me close.


Amanda, I have watched you choke for years

while carrying smooth stones in your pockets.

Those bugs you buried have made a home

for new clover

            go back

                        and see what you can find.

About the Author

Amanda Boyanowski-Morin is a poet, prolific knitter and wanderer who is most often found outside walking while making sweaters, reading to her chickens, scrambling up rocks after her small humans, and enjoying learning all the cephalopod facts her brain can absorb.

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