Volley of Darkness - Marilyn McVicker

The chill breath of evening,
spiced with wood smoke,
curls in the window.
I turn on the amber lamp,
soothe dark corners,
open the cast iron door, strike a match,
light the wood stove.
Outside a barred owl hoots
a low tone, answered by another,
on the other side of our cove.
It gets dark early now.
The owls hoot back and forth,
a volley of eerie whispers.
I sit down, arrange a pillow
on my high back rocker,
wrap tightly the tattered afghan
around my legs, tend the yearning
that opens as a chasm when darkness falls.

Marilyn McVicker had her first poem published in 1980. Her poetry has most recently been published in Kakalak, Earth’s Daughters, Red Clay Review, and The Prompt. She has published articles and essays, a non-fiction book, Sauna Detoxification Therapy, with McFarland & Co., in 1997, and a poetry chapbook, Some Shimmer of You, with Finishing Line Press, in 2014. She has read her poetry at Western Carolina University’s Literary Festival, the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival, local community colleges, libraries, and other venues. She is a member of the Author’s Guild, and the North Carolina Poetry Society, where she mentored under Dr. Richard Chess, in 2012. She currently works with Pat Riviere-Seel, author of three poetry collections. Marilyn’s fascination with words and self-expression stems from her previous career as a solo flutist and music educator. She retired to a remote cove in the rural mountains of western North Carolina.