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Just Ten More Days

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to order my new chapbook, TRANSPORTED with Finishing Line Press:

Here’s a sample poem, which focuses on the after: the effect on my life of the travels when I was twelve:

Greece

A school year in Egypt,
most of the next
in Rome, but it was Greece
that grabbed and held me.
In three weeks Athens’ high
templed hill, ruined porches
of the Agora, theater of Dionysus,
tucked themselves into memory
like a candle-filled side chapel
that roused my senses
in the cathedral called Europe
so packed with past centuries
it overwhelmed. 
                                    I left
to become an American teen,
romantic, imagining gold
jewelry, Latin lovers.
Greek stones pulled me back.

Greece was my field of study for years, and the fascination with times past has continued into the present.  Before Greece, there were ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, as I explain in “Beginnings”:

Everywhere mysterious signs.  Baffled
by Arabic script I copied the crisp symbols of antiquity:
            n, the running river,
            alef, the vulture
            m, the owl.
Letters I could not weave into words became
ciphers to conjure with.  This was the first time
I chose the past over the present.

Somewhere I still have a notebook filled with those enchanting symbols.

If you haven’t ordered a copy yet, please have a look.

More on My New Chapbook

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Finishing Line Press is featuring my new chapbook, TRANSPORTED, today. Read more about it at the link below.

It’s a good time to share the opening poem, which will demonstrate that the book covers more than the simple recollections of a twelve year old. I hope it intrigues you and makes you curious to read more.

Suitcases

We packed a trunk for Egypt,
following lists of “things you can’t
easily get there,” had it shipped direct,
carried our clothes with us
in thin rectangular suitcases.

Years earlier the British packed trunks
to set up residence in Egypt,
displacing the French.  Only a travelling
salesman would carry his own suitcase.

Now every case has wheels,
an expectation of smooth surfaces.

The trunk, shipped home full
of souvenirs—inlaid plates, foot
cushions to be stuffed, kohl bottles—
sits in my bedroom, holding remnants
of childhood, my wedding dress, my
children’s art. 

Two ceramic geese sit on the green cloth
which covers it like a very low coffee table.
It has shrunk.

Wheeled cases wait in the closet.