Laura Ring




In Dardago we did not know
we were Baroque – I,
the calcant, working the bellows
of the pipe organ in St. Mary’s,
you with your hand on the stops, kitten feet
on the pedalboard.

All day long I breathe for you
with my arms, fill your reservoir
like a whisper stoppered in a bottle
you open against your ear. You finger Bach

on the manual; ranked flue pipes send
soft metal chords to the sky. Every note
an emptying of lungs, punched
by the sudden lift of your eyes
in antiphon.

Bells – on a wheel! A star-shaped wheel.
And a warble, like birdsong

I say, Swell
to Great! Pushing
is the easy part, the weight
of my shoulders, back, forearms.
Fold the leather gussets
like a paper crane.
Harder to tend
to my own inhale...

Pull out the stops!
Now the windchest:
how you open me like a door.  


Laura Ring is a native Vermonter, currently living and working in Chicago. She writes poetry and non-fiction. You can visit her at


next |  spring/summer 2008 | 
books and chapbooks from authors in this issue |  kaleidowhirl