Under the same photo of tree with its owl, dew with its feathers, light with its obstruction of motives, you name the moment by tying it to a stone, which itself has a history before yours and a future without you. Earthly life made of dirt and ashes, bones, and a cloistered devotion. Eyes blink until sleep’s window parts shores. You bear witness to a dance that welcomes disclosure, as notes touch each other’s edges. Subplot or subject, the story of an hour, ripeness seeks a lens to frame its arrival.

Maxine Chernoff is chair of Creative Writing at San Francisco State University and editor of the literary journal New American Writing. Winner of a 2013 NEA Fellowship in Poetry and the 2009 PEN USA Translation Award for her co-translation of The Selected Poems of Friedrich Hoelderlin. She is the author of fourteen books of poems including the forthcoming book, Here,* from Counterpath Press (2014), and Without from Shearsman (2012). The author of six books of fiction, her novel American Heaven, and her book of stories, Some of her Friends that Year, were finalists for the Northern California Book Award. She was a Visiting International Scholar at Exeter University in winter of 2013.

*"Edge" is included in Here