by Dana Sonnenschein


When you are done knitting,
you weave the tail in,
creating the illusion of infinity

as if that basket at your knee
were full of snakes,
not coils of bulky wool;

I use a child’s shining needle
for this sleight of hand—
charming yarn to lift and lower,

following my swaying shoulder,
the silver eye like a flute’s O
or whatever moves a cobra

but keeps it from striking.
I hide the twisting tail in loops
like mouths but don’t know

if I believe an ourobouros holds
forever, though yarn flickers
and disappears when I let go;

the knitting seems as whole
as a garden where a garter snake flows.
But what’s to stop this tail

from sliding out, leaving a hole? 
Thus, the temptation to tie a knot
and tug it tight as the end of days,

though it may pull through, showing
the way things are connected—
cause and effect in the form of fiber

or call it energy, that mystery
that can be or become anything,
and only ever seems finished.

Dana Sonnenschein’s publications include Corvus, No Angels but These, Natural Forms, and Bear Country. Recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Earth’s Daughters, Feminist Studies, Naugatuck River Review, OPEN: JAL, Pirene’s Fountain, Split Rock Review, and’s Dear America anthology. You can find her @lone_wolf_poet on Twitter, as imagewitchery on Instagram, by name on Facebook, or in her office at Southern Connecticut State University, where she is a professor emerita and still teaches creative writing.