Andrea McBride

Making Preparations

She had her son lug the armchair
up to her bedroom and place
it next to the hospital bed
where she would eventually sleep.


Andrea McBride is a Florida writer who tries to capture the poetry not only in death and loss, but also in Sandhill cranes, Spanish moss and the white sands of Siesta Key.

Andrea McBride

Alone

On her first morning of widowhood
she woke and wondered
what she expected.

Andrea McBride is a Florida writer who tries to capture the poetry not only in death and loss, but also in Sandhill cranes, Spanish moss and the white sands of Siesta Key.

Jennifer Hernandez

Embarkation

Let me clutch those contrail ribbons,
braid my warm fingers

through wispy trails of exhaust,
clutch condensation ropes

as they evaporate like smoke,
like dreams in a gunmetal sky.

Jennifer Hernandez, Minnesota teacher/ writer, has performed her poetry at a non-profit garage, a taxidermy-filled bike shop, and in the kitchen for her toughest audience — her children.

Steve Klepetar

Ten Below

On winter mornings
frost webs the window in a subtle mesh

and silence rises
toward glass, a great fish snared.

Steve Klepetar writes in Minnesota, where fishing is a metaphor for everything.

Nancy Scott

Late in My Diversity

I keep forgetting that I might return
to the pre-Solstice poem,
to the paragraph about hope and hunger,
to the same furniture after the tarps come off,
to long and short sleeves,
to lists and railings,
to juggling shoulds and can’ts,
to wondering what will fall,
to weather and whether,
to being ignored,
to being someone’s good deed,
to having to walk and eat broccoli,
to living past dreams,
to inhaling memories wrapped in lilacs,
to seeking advice from ghosts,
to expecting survival.

Nancy Scotts over 700 essays and poems have recently appeared in, among others, Braille Forum, Disabilities Studies Quarterly, Philadelphia Stories, Pentimento and Wordgathering.

Laura Winkelspecht

Defibrillator Training

We watch under fluorescent lights
learning to restart a faulty heart,

while I fret about the day
I must hold the paddles to the chest

of Joe in Accounting
with his red face and big laugh

or maybe the woman in the lunchroom
who eats Lean Cuisine

while playing solitaire on her phone—
or maybe it will be me

with a group of people
gathered round

reading instructions
while my heart waits.

Laura Winkelspecht is a left-handed poet and writer from Wisconsin whose last name might be longerthan a one sentence poem.

Elizabeth Alford

Wisps of October

The night we made s’mores
at the dining room table—
toasting marshmallows
on the ends of pretzel sticks
over unscented tea candles,
watching bubbling balls of fire
gradually transform into
charred, crispy, gooey
ghosts of their former selves
which we ate smooshed between
graham crackers and half each
of a Hershey’s chocolate bar—
was the last night I thought
with absolute certainty
that our love
would never melt down,
reach the end of its wick,
and burn out completely.

Elizabeth Alford (Hayward, CA) usually writes poetry on her laptop, but in its absence, will settle for her cell phone. See more of her work @ Facebook.com/ElizabethAlfordPoetry

Elizabeth Alford

Poetry Will Not Come Today

Poetry will not come today—
not if I whistle, not if I whoop,

not if I whimper, as if to a dog
that does not wish to be found:

how it slinks through shadows
edging moonlit sidewalks

and abandoned back alleys,
paws to the ground,

nose to the wind, waiting
to catch a familiar scent,

to satisfy bared teeth
and the rumble in its gut.


Elizabeth Alford (Hayward, CA) usually writes poetry on her laptop, but in its absence, will settle for her cell phone. See more of her work @ Facebook.com/ElizabethAlfordPoetry