Sworn to Observance

by Sarah J. Sloat

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Even the dust has a life of its own
lying under the radiator –

mostly stagnant, although
it must stir, busy building
a swath of silt.

A piece of thread is swallowed;
a piece of thread may serve
to measure this long silence.

I sit nearby in my saint suit,
no intention of action.

With a finger sometimes
in the dust I draw a circle
to see how God enters into it.


Sarah J. Sloat grew up in New Jersey, but now lives in Germany, where she works for a news agency. Her poems have appeared in in Bateau and in Third Coast, among other publications. Tilt Press published her chapbook In the Voice of a Minor Saint in early 2009. Sarah keeps a blog at The Rain in my Purse .

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