Poetry

The Mercy


The Mercy

The ship that took my mother to Ellis Island
Eighty-three years ago was named "The Mercy."
She remembers trying to eat a banana
without first peeling it and seeing her first orange
in the hands of a young Scot, a seaman
who gave her a bite and wiped her mouth for her
with a red bandana and taught her the word,
"orange," saying it patiently over and over. Read more about The Mercy

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The Dying Garden

I wish I could share so many of the lovely poems of autumn, the poems that tell of ripening apples and smiling sunflowers, brisk and crispy air, the laughter of children going to school, the ending of glorious summer and the beginning of a fruitful and colorful fall. But this year I just can't. From one corner of the country to another communities are on fire, cities are under water, hospitals have no room for more sick, people are dying from heat prostration and states are bent on punishing those who have learned to breath free. Read more about The Dying Garden

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May and the Poets

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Over the River

To my almost certain knowledge, I learned this song as a small child as we did go over the river and through the wood to grandfather's house for Thanksgiving. Grandfather's house would have been the Home Place, as my grandparents called it. And the sleigh was an automobile of an early 1940's vintage. And it was Iowa, so there was snow. There was probably pumpkin pie. I don't remember much else, but this song has always meant Thanksgiving to me and not just because of the title. There was a river, and there was a wood, and there was certainly pumpkin pie. Read more about Over the River

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