Irish Triplets

Each of us in our separate corners
near enough to the Great Lakes,
we could be Lake Superior’s

triple threat
of rogue waves.
But in 1975, none of us would dare swim

that far out
to sink
the Edmund Fitzgerald.

We are not the three sisters
of agriculture.
No one wants to grow up

to be a climbing bean.
Despite the dolor
of our father’s mother

who claimed her blood bled black
and despite my tendency
to suspire poetically,

we are not the sorrow sisters.
We do not belong in a play
by Chekhov or Shakespeare.

We are not the balance sisters—
only one of us
has given birth.

After a lifetime of seeking
a grand purpose for this threesome,
I give in.

It turns out
everyday heroes are walking
close behind

ready to catch me
when my dirty bare feet
slip on the overgrown beach grass.

Ready to remove the stinger
when a honey bee stings my thigh.
Ready to laugh at me

when I demand
we give the dead insect
a proper burial.

I’m number three,
the one to blame
for making a crowd.

Stuck in the middle seat,
I am the odd girl
in red hand-me-down shorts.

Or, maybe that’s the pair I swiped
from my oldest sister’s dresser
while she was learning to drive.

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4 thoughts on “Irish Triplets

  1. Amy, I met you many years ago in Cincinnati with my wife Amy, we gave you a ride to your hotel. Having said that, I wanted you to know that my father John(Jack McCarthy) was the 1st mate on theFitzgerald when it went down. It was to have been his last trip of his last year, my mother Mary had been waiting 35 years for him to come home. When I read the line 3 sisters I had a good idea what was coming. Thank you for the many wonderful poems thru the years, you certainley have an active muse. Circle of Life—– From: Night & Day Poems of Amy Nash To: thomasmccarthy@zoomtown.com Sent: Sunday, July 02, 2017 11:49 AM Subject: [New post] Three Sisters

    Arambler posted: “Each of us in our separate corners near enough to the Great Lakes, we could be Lake Superior’s triple threat of rogue waves. But in 1975, none of us would dare swim that far out to sink the Edmund Fitzgerald. We are not the three sisters of agricult”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So loved this poem, Amy. Rich images, and I even had to look up a word 🙂
    Made me think of my own threesome, and what ‘grand purpose’ (or indeed, just a common one) there may have been for us, had there been time to fulfill one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Traci. Since the Poets House workshop I seem to be focused on my sisters. All those common experiences. Makes my heart ache for you. I cannot fathom losing a sister.

      Like

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