The Cleave Poetry Webzine [ISSN: 1758-9223]

A Compass Rose, Explained to a Raindrop by Andrea Defoe

In submission on November 22, 2008 at 7:03 am

A warm welcome to Andrea Defoe.


A Compass Rose, Explained to a Raindrop

North, then Northwest – from the black river, – so this is Northeast:

from where the road forks – you empty out into – a pristine lake

you choose like Frost – a manmade reservoir – poisoned with mercury

but both ways are so paved – with a foot-shaped floor – like the god took a swim

as to show no wear – like a shoe slipped off – and abandoned

but if you continue West – to the center, a giant – Eastern style artesian well

you’ll flow into a kettle – cartographer’s teacup – brimming

a glacial relic – all chipped clay and oldness – with a good spring

like the cool grottos – awful musty – and out of use

to the Southwest there are – tents in a campground, – doors facing Southeast

thunder clouds – angled roofs for rain – shut windows

that call you up – so you can drip down – and you’re kept outside

so you can boom – and make mud, – because weather is dirty

feed that hurricane brewing down South.


Andrea Defoe lives with her family on the Red Cliff Indian Reservation in northern Wisconsin.

She prefers to think of herself as being at least of few cats shy of crazy cat lady, but she’s

honestly not sure. Her poems have appeared in various literary journals, most recently:

Rattle, 32 Poems, New American Writing and Margie.

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