For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea 

                                                                   ―E.E. Cummings

The angel who smells of my childhood
My mother, piano and oboe
Whose face the icon reflects
Auburn hair like a Modigliani
Eyes the color of rain
Light caught by surprise
Whose presence the absence reveals
Whose laughter burns snow
Whose warm breath I breathed
This morning as I woke
The scent of gardenias whispering
I never left you

from Life in Suspension (Salmon Poetry, 2016)


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HÉLÈNE CARDONA’s books include three poetry collections, most recently Life in Suspension and Dreaming My Animal Selves (Salmon Poetry); and three translations: Beyond Elsewhere (Gabriel Arnou-Laujeac, White Pine Press), winner of a Hemingway Grant, Ce que nous portons (Dorianne Laux, Éditions du Cygne), and Walt Whitman’s Civil War Writings for WhitmanWeb. She co-edits Plume and Fulcrum: An Anthology of Poetry and Aesthetics, and contributes essays to The London Magazine. She holds a Master’s in American Literature from the Sorbonne, and taught at Hamilton College and Loyola Marymount University. Acting credits include Chocolat, Jurassic World, The Hundred-Foot Journey, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Mad Max: Fury Road, and Mumford. She is the Computer Voice in the TV series Heroes Reborn.

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