2 Poems by Mary Oishi

for Susan

didn’t make headlines
cameras weren’t rolling
earth didn’t shift, rivers didn’t rise
no geiger counters moved
no seismographs

stock market didn’t tick up
or down as a result
not a penny was spent or made
bookies didn’t cash in
gamblers didn’t cash out

pundits didn’t comment
politicians didn’t weigh in
scholars didn’t write papers
pollsters didn’t call

heck, the barmaid didn’t even notice

but oh the joy! the smile
that spread across her face
when after twenty years
she danced

last visit

there was a window:
she looked in that direction but
she didn’t see

she didn’t see the trees
at the end of her yard
she didn’t see the birds
singing in them
she didn’t see the pleasant
summer sky with the faraway clouds

all she could see
was five years of memories,
her granddaughter waving,
not knowing it was goodbye

Mary Oishi is Albuquerque’s Poet Laureate (2020-2022). She is the author of Spirit Birds They Told Me (West End Press, 2011), and co-author of Rock Paper Scissors (Swimming with Elephants Publications, 2018), finalist for the New Mexico Arizona Book Award. Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies and reviews, and have been published in translation in both print and digital platforms.