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Monday, April 27, 2015

April 27th Poem - Sleigh Bed


Visiting Emily Dickinson’s home in Amherst

After days divided into increments
of grocery lists, poetry and baking bread,
weary and delighted, you slip into
your dark wood single bed
and feel soft linens against your skin.

Did you exchange hungry kisses
with Judge Otis P. Lord on that bed?
Or, was it sacred space where
only dreams and poems were wed?

Harvard looted everything of yours
except this sleigh bed,
its head and foot boards slanting outward,
where you lay listening and let
the hodgepodge of eternity in.

from Singing Magic by Barbara Alfaro
© Barbara Alfaro

Sunday, April 26, 2015

April 26th Poem - The Ridiculous Woman


I’m a ridiculous woman
in a ridiculous body
wearing ridiculous clothes.
My eyes are two buttons,
my nose a clothespin,
my mouth, half a crayon,
ears, shells of odd size,
hands, empty mittens.
My feet I refuse to describe.
My dreams are of noodles,
my hair, spinach green.
I’m the most ridiculous woman
I’ve ever seen.

from Singing Magic by Barbara Alfaro
© Barbara Alfaro

Saturday, April 25, 2015

April 25th Poem - Heart


I sold my heart today,
the gold locket I seldom wore &
my grandfather’s cufflinks,
in a mall jewelry store.

The gold locket I seldom wore &
purchased at Christmas,
my grandfather’s cufflinks,
melting after the teller’s remark.

Purchased at Christmas,
these shining things,
melting after the teller’s remark,
“Good for you, you’ve made

yourself a little money.”
My grandfather’s cufflinks,
shining, engraved.
I sold my heart today.

from Singing Magic by Barbara Alfaro
© Barbara Alfaro

Friday, April 24, 2015

April 24th Poem - Afterlife


People do odd things
after the death of a parent –
lose their faith,
end a marriage,
travel somewhere
they read of long ago,
as if, as if…
the faces they owned
before they saw
the things no one tells,
would somehow return,
certain and vaguely young.

The last time I saw my mother
she winked at me when encouraged
to attend a sing-along.
I understood that wink to mean
there wasn’t much to sing about
stationed by the large window
in a locked wheelchair so the nursing
home staff could move freely.
That window waits for me.

It does no one good
to cry in the dark,
“I was wrong.”  You need
to go on in the way
almost sleeping children
pull bedcovers and sigh
into the breadth of night. 

from Singing Magic by Barbara Alfaro
© Barbara Alfaro