Thief / Kelly Sullivan


At the door today I found a crumpled thing,

a golden linnet executed against the glass. It weighs

less than the lemon I slice and bring with your tea,

less than the hand you press in mine when we say


goodbye, formally, wrapped against our selves, strangers

on the street. The linnet does not move. After rain and days

it is darker, smaller, half decomposed. How long does

it take a body to break down? You grew older,


nearly unrecognizable but for love. Some

things begin again and find their voice. The linnet

could lift up on the wind, his tail might flip

and gather strength, his eye might blink and open


and his throat, as our throats could, change out and sing.

Some things go unspoken.







Kelly Sullivan’s poems have been published by SalmagundiPoetry Ireland ReviewThe Hopkins Review, The Clearing (UK), The Moth (Ireland), and elsewhere. Her chapbook Fell Year was published by Green Bottle Press (London) last year, and she’s now looking for a publisher for her full collection, Tether. She teaches Irish literature at New York University.