A soldier in World War I brings
a German bride back to America,
but he does not love
women and she stays locked
her whole married life in a
language she cannot learn.
There are children who leave and don’t
come back, even when the mother dies
and the father’s health fails. What kind
of children are these? people ask, who
still consider the husband a kind man –
remember, the wife spoke only silence.
What kind of children? you ask, and I
look away – I have already shared
what I know, and there is nothing one
will not do to another, again and again.
Buy When I Wake, It Will Be Forever at the Sundress store!
Virginia Smith Rice earned her MFA in creative writing from Northwestern University. Her first full-length poetry collection, When I Wake It Will Be Forever, was published in 2014 by Sundress Publications. Her poems appear in Cimarron Review, Cincinnati Review, Denver Quarterly, Meridian, Rattle, Stone Highway Review, Superstition Review, and Third Coast, among other journals. She is co-editor of the online poetry journal, Kettle Blue Review, and associate editor at Canopic Publishing.