Dzvinia Orlowsky

The Wind Cried Mary  
September 22, 2023 Orlowsky Dzvinia

The Wind Cried Mary


When Hendrix coaxed, Are you experienced?
we answered oh, quite contrary.

Only wild meadow grass jazzed in evening light
and the wind cried Mary.

Fringed backpacks, hair free flying, little lambs sure to go,
we left the Midwest,

rake-thin, obsessed, to follow the lovesick wind
crying Mary.

Who waters your green? A woman’s nothing
without a man!

The ocean heaved—go!
but the wind cried Marry.

We picked up brooms drearily sweeping, Jacks-in-boxes
we thought worth keeping.

How do we seem? we asked weeping;
the wind waxed… Merry.

Our bodies gave them their heft, the shape of their songs,
—sweet Jesus, Joseph, and Mary—

why didn’t we leave?


Pushcart prize poet, translator, and a founding editor of Four Way Books, Dzvinia Orlowsky has published six full-length poetry collections including her most recent, Bad Harvest, a 2019 Massachusetts Book Awards “Must Read” in Poetry.  Her co-translations with Ali Kinsella from the Ukrainian of Natalka Bilotserkivets’s selected poems, Eccentric Days of Hope and Sorrow, (Lost Horse Press), was a finalist for the 2022 Griffin International Poetry Prize, the Derek Walcott Poetry Prize, ALTA’s National Translation Book Award in Poetry, and winner of the 2020-2021 AAUS Translation Prize.  Her and Ali’s co-translations from the Ukrainian of Halyna Kruk’s selected poems, Lost in Living, is forthcoming from Lost Horse Press in spring, 2024.  Dzvinia’s new poetry collection, Those Absences Now Closest, is forthcoming from Carnegie Mellon University Press in fall, 2024.