Three Poems from Annie Finch’s Earth Days

3 August, 2023

Annie Finch’s poetry is a pure tone that calls us home to the first impulse of poetry. We link to mystery. We lift off.

—Joy Harjo



Earth Days cover - by annie finch - the markaz review
Earth Days is available from Nirala Publications.

“Annie Finch’s spellbinding poems give voice to the earth-centered spirituality of our era.  Finch is a renowned poetry witch who skillfully draws on the secrets of poetic rhythm and craft to honor the sacredness of the natural world. Earth Days gathers her poems over five decades around the elements of fire (flame, sun, stars, heat, passion); air (moon, wind, light, wisdom); earth (mud, roots, mountain, tree, strength); water (ocean, river, rain, tears, heart); and matrix (intuition, mystery, ritual, spirit). Finch’s poems enchant the ear as well as the mind, combining her virtuosic use of poetic craft with a rhapsodic, transformative, and feminist postmodern sensibility.” —Nirala series



Annie Finch



                        For Vincent

Home is a birthplace since you came to me,
pouring yourself down through me like a soul,
calling the cosmos imperiously
into me so it could reach to unroll
out from the womb where the wild rushes start
in a quick, steady heartbeat not from my own heart.
This is my body, which you made to break,
which gave you to make you, till you bear its mark,
which held you till you found your body to take,
(open at home on my bed in the dark).

The Door


It seemed as if a door came calling,
in a voice as old as carols,
telling lies as old as candles,
in words that were all about
some afternoons, lost on a child,
that could have been simple but
were lost, when I was just a child.

There was a day and then a dream
that I went through, and a cathedral
whose tall choir prayed
a singing message through the nave
until I heard a forest there
(though far outside, the trees were bare)

Earth Goddess and Sky God


You haven’t formed me.  I’m a monster still.

Then give me your body.  Give it to me in rain.

Look up and fill me.  I am too dark to stain.

You haven’t  held me. I hold apart my will

Spread dryness through me.  I have a night to fill

in high heat-speckled waves, apart from where

I will come down.  I have nothing to share

with breath.  I will give it back.  There is one to kill,

one to renew, and one to persuade to weep.

My night holds everything except for sleep.


Annie Finch is the author of seven books of poetry, including Earth Days: Poems, Chants, and Spells in Five Directions (Nirala), Eve and Calendars (both finalists for the National Poetry Series), and Among the Goddesses: An Epic Libretto in Seven Dreams (awarded the Sarasvati Award). Her other books include A Poet’s Craft, Measure for Measure: An Anthology of Poetic Meters, and Choice Words: Writers on Abortion.  Finch’s poems have appeared in the New York Times, Poetry, Paris Review, Penguin Book of Twentieth-Century American Poetry, and Norton Anthology of World Literature.  Educated at Yale University and Stanford University, where she earned her PhD, she teaches meter and magic at and has shared her poems and Poetry Witch Ritual Theater performances across the U.S. and in India, Mexico, Africa, and throughout Europe.

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