1. Home
  2. Poetry Magazine
  3. Poems
  4. Sifting in the Afternoon by Malachi Black
Sifting in the Afternoon

Related Poem Content Details

Some people might describe this room as spare:
a bedside table and an ashtray and an antique

chair; a mattress and a coffee mug;
an unwashed cotton blanket and a rug

my mother used to own. I used to have
a phone. I used to have another

room, a bigger broom, a wetter sponge.
I used to water my bouquet

of paper clips and empty pens, of things
I thought I’d want to say if given chance;

but now, to live, to sit somehow, to watch
a particle of thought dote on the dust

and dwindle in a little grid of shadow
on the sunset’s patchy rust seems like enough.
Source: Poetry (November 2009)

More from this issue

This poem originally appeared in the November 2009 issue of Poetry magazine

  • Search every issue of Poetry

Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine. Search the whole site

Sifting in the Afternoon

Related Poem Content Details

  • Search every issue of Poetry

Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine. Search the whole site

Other Information