Cheryl Snell

Four Walls

That house once had good bones;
it made it hard to move. We imagined
French doors thrown open on guests
lined up to the horizon, shimmering
at the seam of earth and sky.

Such dreaming exhausted us.
To steady our nerves, we plucked
at the piano’s guts, summoned singalongs
already gone sharp or flat, notes wafting
out a window twisting like an arthritic hip.

We left it embedded in decades of dirt,
silence lapping at sun-bleached walls.
We’d never have chosen that color
if we’d known how much it would fade,
or that we’d have to live with it so long.

cheryl snell


Cheryl Snell’s books include poetry and fiction. She has had work included in a Sundress Best of the Net Anthology and is a three time Pushcart Prize nominee. In addition to her traditionally published titles, she collaborates with her sister Janet on art and word chapbooks, and plays a mean classical piano.