My mother’s shade

Some call it celadon,
sea green, historic colors

any of us can find on
paint cans in the big box stores.

But she called it Spider green,
like lichen on boulders in

the forests dark and mossy,
so delicate, so hidden.

Another phrase she made up
as if words were a child’s game

(as she said, a rose is a
rose is a rose all the same)

and shouldn’t she express
feelings others failed to see?

Obvious to us, of course,
her web-like intimacy:

the armoire she named Monstro,
chairs cat-shaped, her Salvation

Army finds in the spider’s
green mansion that we lived in.

Carla Sarett
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