Washington Square Review

Sophie Klahr

Summer Job, June

Sophie Klahr

Winner of the 2015 Washington Square Poetry Award, selected by Eduardo C. Corral


There are cream sounds at dusk, and garden stones

brought from the lake. Lace curtains, dim gold vines

along bedroom walls. Low moon—lavender,

ravens; the scent of algae in the air;

damp chalk children left on the street last night;

flies shimmering over a small dead bird.

One summer, a boy slipped, lost to the gorge

where he had been climbing with his brother.

When my brother visits, he slips nightly

into churches to touch their organs, &

I trail him, waiting outside the windows.

If he sees me, he will not play at all.

The boy who did not fall works the grounds here

as a gardener. I often see him

kneeling, his hands slowly turning the earth.



SOPHIE KLAHR’s poems, essays, and reviews appear in Ploughshares, The Rumpus, Gulf Coast, Ninth Letter, Sycamore Review, and other publications. Her residencies and fellowships include the Art Farm and the Atlantic Center for the Arts. She is the author of the chapbook ______ Versus Recovery (Pilot Books), and is the contributing editor at Gigantic Sequins. She lives in California.