Whatever else the orchestra says,
the cello insists, You’re dying.
It speaks from the core
of the tree’s hacked-out heart,
shaped and smoothed like a woman.
Be glad you are not hard wood
yourself and can hear it.
Every day the cello is taken
into someone’s arms, taken between
spread legs and lured into
its shivering. The arm saws and
saws and all the sacred cries of saints
and demons issue from the carved cleft holes.
Like all of us, it aches, sending up moans
from the pit we balance on the edge of.
( Mary Karr )