Moriah Cohen


Moriah Cohen’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Hayden’s Ferry Review, Hoot: A Mini Literary Magazine on a Postcard, Stone Highway Review, and Narrative where she was runner-up in this year’s “30 Below” contest. She received her MFA from Rutgers University’s Newark Campus. Currently, she teaches at Ramapo College.

On Learning the Year Used to be 410 Days Long

When the first warm day broke spring open, you waited
for sounds you could believe in to wander
through the screen, waited for a clean-shaven

magician to pull your father from a hat
like the rabbit he was. When that was over,
all you were left with were oyster shells

and a balloon-sword that couldn’t cut
the sun in two. Your whole life it continues,
this process of being opened just to see

what the rings inside you tell about time.
Yesterday, your son turned two, and I told you
it’s not that the world is any less

distant than it used to be, but that it’s found
something to savor. Now, this close – the scratchy
patch of your chest pressed to my back – I can see you

will never leave her. I wonder if all parents
realize they are small gods plucking our dark
bodies from a curve and crashing them

one bright moment into another.

Within a short time, I heard two stories—a Radiolab episode on a discovery that coral fossils prove the year used to be longer and one involving an emotional fling in which my male friend found himself engaged. It can only be considered serendipitous that both tales so well informed each other.