I sleep beneath a quilt

· 3rd Place Poetry Winner, Melody Newey Johnson ·

April 11, 2017

and dream of cotton, lace, silk,
of women’s hands held just-so,
the needle set, thread pulled
across beeswax or tongue,
stitches sung while women

sew memories. I sleep beneath
music made by women’s hands,
dream beneath a quilt made by
my grandmothers and while I sleep
they lay their needles down and
touch my feet. They lay their quilted

hands on my head, breast, belly
and hip. They bless me. What is
the garment of the holy priesthood
if not a quilt, a blanket blessing from
the hands of those who made it?
Who dressed us when we left

the garden? Who made the skins
we wear? I dream beneath a quilt
made by The Mother, her hands
moving like sunrise across an
unfamiliar landscape, her song
clothing everyone in light.

Melody Newey Johnson

Melody Newey Johnson’s poems have appeared in online journals, literary magazines, and anthologies. Her first collection, Fifty-Two: A Year of Tiny Poems, is a work in progress. Her poetry has been featured in collaborative art exhibits in the Salt Lake Art Center and as part of the 2002 Winter Olympics small gallery project. She is past poetry editor of Exponent II magazine. Melody lives and works in Salt Lake City with her husband where she enjoys gardening, hiking, and building sheet forts with grandchildren.