My Mother Paints Her First Picture at 90

by Adam Chiles

Seams of gray drift silently behind two trees, stripped, char-like,
a white lake working its frostbite into the canvas.

The moon — like her eye — near perfect in its aperture of grief.
This is how it must be now: sky slated against

a neutral white, her days without him extending like a hymn
of water, fathomless. This is what she owns:

the blinding garment of the mere, her moon a celestial blister.
In front of her the infinite manicured grays, these trees

in their soundless blackening, and a stillness that is almost
like a prayer filling her room — which is starless —

sequestered, alone.