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Showing posts from February, 2018

Dig, a poem by Jo Barbara Taylor

Dig by Jo Barbara Taylor       Cathédrale Sainte-Bénogne       Dijon,France Outside the simple sacred church, an open pit. My first archaeological dig. July sun throws shadow deep in the hole. Diggers in khaki shorts and dungarees pick, sift, brush in consecrated dirt with tiny tools like children ply to shape a sandcastle on shore. They squat, sit, kneel, pick, sift, brush, and wash. Each exposed layer, down, down to 500 A.D. visible as circles on a stump, tells the story of basilica, abbey, cathedral in dust, shards of pottery, in bones. The sweet smell of sautéed onion floats from a window across the street, anoints the pit. When evening shadow darkens the pit and the aroma of butter and onion reaches the sixth century, the pickers and sifters climb the scaffold, pass each layer of the plot, all the while adding a new chapter. Now I am a character in the story, doing the same. Jo Barbara Taylor  lives in North Carolina, but

The Rainy Day, a poem by Keith Welch

The Rainy Day by Keith Welch The rain on the roof                   The rain helps hide drums a soothing rhythm.          us from the soldiers. It's a good day for                      all our belongings are sodden reading or perhaps a nap.         and heavy- the mud slows us. I curl in my armchair                 Our food is wet-in two days with book and teacup.               it will be exhausted. The rain rolls off the                  Maybe the rain will extinguish roof, down the gutters.              our burning houses. My eyelids are heavy; it's          The river is swollen; many will a good day to stay in.                not survive the crossing. The cat makes herself               Behind us, distant, we hear dogs comfortable in my lap.               Thank God there are no helicopters. I drop my book and lean           The children are cold, the old back, resting my eyes.              sick; there's no way to warm them.

Running in the Dark: Creative Nonfiction by Maureen Deaver Purcell

Running in the Dark by Maureen Deaver Purcell             Even on a mildly bad day, my father, a good German Catholic boy, would never think of disrespecting a priest. But this time the priest created a very bad day. My mother had described to the priest the person her husband became when he got drunk, and the Father dared her to prove it. He and one of his priest pals got it into their heads that they would have my parents over one evening and then get my father the drunkest he had ever been, just to see if it was true – that he was a bad drunk. On the night of the experiment, in his stupor, Dad broke a chair. I think he tripped over it. Afterward he fled the rectory and drove the block and a half home while our mother lingered to discuss the situation with the priests.             My brother and I were sitting in the living room watching television that night when we became aware that our father was standing in the dark doorway between the kitchen and dining room. He

How to Love Someone With Bipolar Disorder, a prose poem by Becky Armoto

How to Love Someone with Bipolar Disorder by Becky Armoto Every January morning, we’d eat breakfast from our wedding-gift waffle maker, shivering like abandoned children (and we were children) in our heat-controlled apartment, where frost decorated the inside of the windows in snowflakes. Wrapped in quilts, we sat on an old futon that doubled as both our couch and our bed. So broke and so in love, we believed entire diamond-bright galaxies revolved around us. How could we have known my six-month depression was more than homesickness? Ten years later, we found ourselves in marriage counseling, sitting across from each other like war generals. I looked at the Nativity set on the end table where cold, hard, chipped baby Jesus stared at nothing. I stared back at my husband and said, “I can’t love you anymore.” In spite of this, he carried me through the day to day realities of child-caregiving, shopping, cooking, bill-paying, and washing laundry as I lay in bed. Now, ten more years hav

All Memories Are Really Half Memories, a poem by Rosemary Freedman

All Memories Are Really Half Memories by Rosemary Freedman All memories are really half memories; a pie without the smell of the pie. A photo of you fishing without the sting and swell of mosquito bites. The lake with small granite colored waves and we cannot recall the name of the boy who drowned there, or even that he drowned. We think back and see all the clear faces, but they were never really clear, because the sun was almost completely blinding. And this is how it is, our brains on perpetual auto-correct, fixing the broken half-faces. Correcting all the flaws. Tricking us. Sometimes we wake up and all that is left are uncorrected proofs. The half face we could not see is filled in with the imperfections, or left empty to show what never was. Sometimes we see just a blur. The photo someone took when putting the camera into their purse. The memory we did not pay attention to— like that one girl who sat alone in the cafeter