The Madison Review: the Extended Cut no. 1

Hello there!

The Madison Review is starting a new online series showcasing exceptional work we have received that was not a good fit for the fall and spring editions. Our first piece will be "Apparitions" by Anele Rubin, a poem that explores the complex feelings of grief that comes after the loss of a loved one.

Anele Rubin’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Rattle, december, Mudfish, Midwest Quarterly, Paterson Literary Review, San Pedro River Review, Chattahoochee Review, Raleigh Review, Miramar, New Ohio Review, and many other places. Her poetry collection, Trying to Speak, was published by Kent State University Press. She lives in upstate New York.


When our mother died

you told me

to drink a lot of tea,

that that would help her

appear to me

and I did

and she did

but in speaking of it

I would be careful

to say in my dreams

and now with no tea at all

you appear

in my dreams

breaking into them

like your calls

used to break

into my ordinary world

but not like those calls at all

except in the way

of interruption.

Now you come

not as a cry of distress

but as yourself

lit from within

or bathed in light—

crooked smile, greenish eyes,

your familiar shrug--and then

you shake your head and laugh

as if to say

what on earth was that—

that roller coaster ride

of a life?—

and I go to hug you

in my dream

and wake in your embrace.

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