George Bilgere is the author of several books of poetry, including The Going (1994), Haywire (2006), The Good Kiss (2010) and The White Museum (2010). Haywire won the 2006 May Swenson Poetry Award. Bilgere has received grants and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ohio Arts Council, the Society of Midland Authors, the Fulbright Foundation and the Witter Bynner Foundation. He received a Pushcart Prize in 2009, and he currently teaches at John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio.
This poem is from The White Museum.
When I came to my mother’s house
the day after she had died
it was already a museum of her
unfinished gestures. The mysteries
from the public library, due
in two weeks. The half-eaten square
of lasagna in the fridge.
The half-burned wreckage
of her last cigarette,
and one red swallow
of wine in a lipsticked
glass beside her chair.
Finally, a blue Bic
on a couple of downs
and acrosses left blank
in the Sunday crossword,
which actually had the audacity
to look a little smug
at having, for once, won.
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Maureen Doallas says
Excellent poem. Wonderful details. I especially like the image of the house as “museum of her /unfinished gestures”.
I’m not familiar with Bilgere’s work but will plan to take a look at it. Thank you for spotlighting him.