by Nadia Colburn
Sleep, like a golden rain, fall through me. Hard earth, that resists the shovel’s metal blade, yield. Buried seed, grow plump, split, push out your extravagant green tendril
reaching for the sun—
On the Shortest Day of the Year
Even if there is only the smallest door
made of stone, with no handle,
bend low, put all your weight into it: it opens onto the wide expanse
of where you’ve never been— groundless, blue, and untranslatable, and there—just at the edge of your vision—
a single purple flower, rooting down.
Nadia Colburn is the author of The High Shelf, and her poetry and prose have appeared in more than eighty publications, including the New Yorker, American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, Spirituality & Health, Lion’s Roar, and the Yale Review. "Invocation" and "On the Shortest Day of the Year" are from her poetry collection I Say the Sky, forthcoming in 2024 from the University Press of Kentucky. She holds a PhD in English from Columbia University and is the founder of Align Your Story Writing School, which brings traditional literary and creative writing studies together with mindfulness, embodied practices, and social and environmental engagement. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with her husband and two children. Find her at nadiacolburn.com, where she offers meditations and free resources for writers.