LouAnn Muhm, Poetry Editor
Linda Benninghoff, Asst. Poetry Editor

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January 2010
Read more poetry in the archives

On the Commune

Seeing Suky, dancing in the sunlight, both the sun and Suky unaware,
Light and woman playing, laughing, moving, circling, shining
I, with my unseen cripple’s stare, drinking in their oblivious beauty,

Faded rose top, faded blue skirt, rippling laughter in lucent lines,
Barefoot, golden, rays playing about and with her,
Moving, circling, laughing, both the light and the woman,

Suky walks away, to sow, to reap, to prune, to taste,
Going and glowing.
The light grows calm and somnolent.
I close my eyes; I see them still, the sun and Suky,

My memories dance, move, circle and shine,
My pain put aside, the day a glory, rppling, playing
Moving, cricling, shining, laughing and I

From the collection:
Poems of Experience, by Cathy Bryant
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Abelard and Heloise, First Introduction

We are then to be always Eve, we wayward women.
When will we gain our full rick of wheat?

Lasciviously, according to his own Latin, Abelard could beat
Heloise, because he could.  It might help her to Heaven, even.

Her medieval back, strong bones left stripped despite
the golden brain, misogyny was trumpet, spit in air.

From the collection:
Practical Loss, by Cherryl E. Garner
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Girl’s World

She gave me nightmares after Nilson,
but for now she is my very own best friend.
It must be Sunday as Nana comes with
cut out dolls. We must be careful not to chop off their legs.

I pull out her tresses and throw them to you,
reeling you in like a prize kipper.
Your eyes glitter as you line up the crayons like candy,
waiting for your turn to devour her beauty.

I make toffee apples of her cheeks,
her eyes a crinkly purple like fading bruises,
or discarded sweet wrappers from your favourite Quality Street.
I might let you eat one if you are very very good.

From the collection:
Hanging On by Shanta Everington
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The Color Green

I ate a crate of avocados
on the front porch with my father.
We peeled them before anyone could catch us.
I sucked the seeds clean and he laughed
at the  green slivers under my fingernails
as he sprayed my hands with the water hose.

I can still see my mother driving her ‘79 mustang
on a rural stretch of road – driving into or to
no place, or maybe even back
to San Antonio. The windows down,
hands white-knuckled on the wheel,
her aqua tank top exposing  green
bruises next to her armpit.
I could see the outline, the familiar
palm-print against her porcelain skin –
my face turns toward the backseat
sees the oversized avocado suitcase;
reach my hand inside the unzipped lid
to find it empty.

From the collection:
Toward Closeness by Heather K. Robinson
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updated: January 2010