Introduction to Husbandry

Definition of Husbandry: To take care of things, of a farm or people;
a careful management of resources; to care for.

Here is my introduction: your attitude
when you took my brother to the hospital
and helped him do wheelies in the waiting room.

You shepherd my unwilling shape towards
the future, the husk of my body in your hands.
The rustle of hyacinths in the bedroom.

Every hurdle one more thing for your hands
to tear down. The hyaline blue of your eyes,
the color of the seaside towns we move to.

I swear your hydromechanics keep my blood
from leaving. When you shook me out
wet with lakewater and hustled me to bed

with a towel and hot tea, did you know the spirit
of the undertaking, the hybrid
nature of your chimeric bride?

Jeannine Hall Gailey recently served as the second Poet Laureate of Redmond, Washington. She is the author of four books of poetry: Becoming the Villainess, She Returns to the Floating World, Unexplained Fevers, and The Robot Scientist’s Daughter, out in 2015 from Mayapple Press. Her work has been featured on NPR’s The Writer’s Almanac, Verse Daily, and in The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. Her poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, The Iowa Review and Prairie Schooner. Her web site is


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