Poem Up At IthacaLit

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Image by Capri23auto from Pixabay

My poem “From The Front Porch” is now live in the spring issue of IthacaLit

along with the other finalists in the 2018 Lauren K. Alleyne Difficult Fruit

Poetry Prize (which I won in 2016). I am thrilled and honoured to appear again

in this gorgeous journal. My deep thanks to editor Michele Lesko!

PS – If you go to the Home page, where she introduces the issue and poets,

there’s an opportunity to click on my picture to indicate a “like” in the shape

of a heart. But only if you like it!

7 Poems Up At “The Zen Space”

Busy Time
BUSY TIME by Lenore Conacher

I’m happy to report I have 6 haiku and an ekphrastic poem, inspired by Lenore Conacher’s painting “Busy Time”, now up at The Zen Space. As you scroll through the Spring 2019 Showcase for my poems, please allow the other poems and photographs to take you somewhere quite wonderful… My deep thanks to editor Daniel Paul Marshall for asking for a few nutshells.

River At Night

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Photo by Sergey Pesterev on Unsplash

The river behind the house at night
has so much more of a voice
in the darkness, rushing
toward the ends of the earth as if
this is the journey of all journeys.

The world I was born into has hurried
me through forty-seven years, never
stopping to place me where I belong:
I want to lie firm and wondrous in the arms
of the river, a boulder of great faith.

Then when it hands me the moon
shimmering and full, and gathers
the rippling stars in close, I am part
of a circle of sisters, sharing stories,
named in their alphabet of light.

Ask me then about ecstasy,
and I will say it runs gleaming
through the secret universe
of my body, that it calls me
home.

An older poem, first published in North Shore Magazine, and included in my first chapbook “Stealing Eternity”. And since its writing, happy to say I found where I belong.

Changed

Photo by David Gomes from Pexels

Today a friend, old before her time,
passed by—younger, it seemed.
Losing her husband, she had lost
her footing in the world for years,
change—the stranger most feared:
hidden in dark rooms everywhere.

I was struck by her face: wax-white
and smooth, like a cupped candle,
her eyes, calm reflective pools
no longer hooded
or stoned with grief,
as if she had sunk through her own tears

to the cold bottom of that well
until it was emptied
of the one held most dear,
and stood now, looking up,
drinking from the buckets
of light that filled it.

Another older poem, included in my chapbook “Stealing Eternity”.

Love Note

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It seemed impossible to love you any more
than I already did, until I saw a photo of you
I hadn’t seen before—taken from a great distance
yet still you loomed large—a jewel in the eye
of the lens.

To see the beautiful fact of yourself caught
midtwirl across a glittering dance floor
like that, lucky marble in the pocket
of our universe—my girl—where,
what would I be without you?

Thought I’d offer a different kind of love poem. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Dark Cupboards

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So much gets lost
down the labyrinthine
corridors of my mind:
not just the great ideas
I can’t keep pace with,
nor the facts and details
distinguishing the writing
on one wall from another,
but the hoof and paw,
the hand and footprint
of lives that once ran
shoulder to shoulder
with mine.

It takes the opening
of dark cupboards,
the revelation of the shelved
shirts and sweaters,
the white wool shawl,
the tennis ball sitting
in the big red bowl and the
pink blanket still threaded
with short black hairs,
to bring the lost ones back
into my hands again,
to wring from them
the fibre and scent
of loveworn years.

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Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Another poem from my first chapbook “Stealing Eternity”. Those were my two beloved dogs – Spats and Brandy – never without a tennis ball!

Poem Up at “Kissing Dynamite”

My poem The Geography of Desire is now up at “Kissing Dynamite”, a stunning new online journal with zest and vision! My deep thanks to editor Christine Taylor for giving this particular poem a perfect home. We are a baker’s dozen and each issue features one poet with commentary – insightful and interesting (Andre Lepine for this issue) – so please enjoy. And for any poet friends out there, do consider submitting to this fine journal! Monthly themes arise from the submissions and the turn around time is very quick. And don’t you just love the name of the journal?

History Lesson

 

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Photo by Jenna Beekhuis on Unsplash

Do I have to go to school today?
my son asks from the womb
of his blankets. He’s looking past me
out the window where the sun has burst
through the branches of the backyard
trees, holding its own branch of light
out to him. He wants to paddle it
like a canoe all over the local lake
of sky, until his arms are tired and
he drifts the glad tide back
to where he began.

There’s a right answer
and there’s an answer that feels right,
that comes out arms swinging
in front, feet pointed forward,
no eyes in the back of its head.
Tell me, whose heart hasn’t once
pleaded for a grim green chalkboard
to be erased of battles and dates,
the heavy book closed, grass left
to grow over those graves, tickling
the bare sole of a foot instead?

The heart that will not negotiate
its interior beat has its own history
to live up to, opening and closing its
chambers like the doors of a classroom,
sending new blood out into the body
of the world. Such a river—though
I have the power—why slow? One day
he may stand on the banks of another river,
studying a small face he loves, bright
with its question, this page falling open
in the dusty notebook of his soul.

This poem was first published in North Shore Magazine before appearing in my earlier chapbook “Stealing Eternity”. My son was about 10 and it was a wonderful experience of sinking into that moment, the two of us suddenly oblivious to the rote demands of the day.