Somewhere, she’s learned

Leah Naomi Green

that color is not color. The red flower,she tells me, absorbs all lightbut red, so reflects redwhere she and I can see it.Daughter, I call her, Pulseof Light, Prism of Many Faces I Know,so many I don't.You are Particular, Waveof the one, deepocean. And she absorbs it all,except daughter — which reflects backto my eye, radiant and factualas any prayer, namedfor the very thing it cannot hold.

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Headshot of Leah Naomi Green

Leah Naomi Green is the author of The More Extravagant Feast (Graywolf Press), selected by Li-Young Lee for the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets and named “one of the best books of 2020” by The Boston Globe. She received the 2021 Lucille Clifton Legacy Award for compassion, courage, truth-telling, and commitment to justice, as well an Academy of American Poets 2021 Climate Action Poetry Prize. Green teaches environmental studies and English at Washington and Lee University. She lives in Rockbridge County, Virginia where she and her family homestead and grow or find much of their food for the year.

Cover of VQR Spring 2022

Spring 2022

Charlottesville, Virginia

University of Virginia

Paul Reyes

Publisher & Executive Editor
Allison Wright

Poetry Editor
Gregory Pardlo

From its inception in prohibition, through depression and war, in prosperity and peace, the Virginia Quarterly Review has been a haven—and home—for the best essayists, fiction writers, and poets, seeking contributors from every section of the United States and abroad. It has not limited itself to any special field. No topic has been alien: literary, public affairs, the arts, history, the economy. If it could be approached through essay or discussion, poetry or prose, VQR has covered it.

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