Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Lullaby (with Exit Sign)

I slept with all four hooves
                       in the air or I slept like a snail

            in my broken shell.

The periphery of the world
                       dissolved. A giant exit sign

            blinking above my head.

My family sings
                       its death march.

            They are the size of the moon.

No, they are the size
                       of thumbtacks punched

            through the sky’s eyelid.

What beauty, what bruise.

                       What strange lullaby is this
            that sings from its wound?)

Here, my dead father knocks

                       on a little paper door. Here,
            my family knocks, waits.

Come through me, my darlings,

                       whatever you are: flame,
            lampshade, soap.

Leave your shattered shadows

                       behind. I’ll be the doorway
            that watches you go.

Credit


Copyright © 2013 by Hadara Bar-Nadav. “Lullaby (with Exit Sign)” was published in Lullaby (with Exit Sign) (Saturnalia Books, 2013). Used with permission of the author.

 

Author


Hadara Bar-Nadav

Hadara Bar-Nadav’s most recent book of poetry is The New Nudity (Saturnalia Books, 2017).

Date Published: 2018-10-03

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/lullaby-exit-sign