Phoebe Marrall, orphaned at the age of nine, was a survivor of The Depression and of a grueling childhood. When she died in 2017 at the age of eighty-four, her daughters Jane Hendrickson and Camille Komine inherited hundreds of poems she had written. They remained unpublished during her lifetime, but it is the intention of her daughters that a collection be compiled for readers to appreciate.Relief, Have You a Name? is currently a work in progress, being edited by Gayle Jansen Beede.
Where I Have My Landmarks
I was in the housing of black dawn.
The night images in their quiet
had monitored what I had not,
and yielded them up to me.
Strange deservedness had its sentries:
for whom did those traffic lights post
their rhythmic green, yellow and red
in intersections hollow and empty?
I came through as a rude,
aggressive driver, pedaling from gas to brake,
unnoticed by lurking roofs
or dewy poles beaming alternating lights.
They stood, I passed, in the black,
yawning faintly gray, faintly loosening.
I crossed the night/dawn meridian,
listening in on the change of hours.
Tomorrow, I shall invade the dawn
again, pressing the accelerator and going
where I’ve planted my landmarks…lumps of
houses against the sky, and a solid green light.