Lynne Thompson

 

 

(USA)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keepsakes

 

Behind their blinds, the neighbors whisper, call the New York poetry dicks and together, they peek in my windows and are shocked by what they see:  a horde of saved words lazing about everywhere—in the daybeds, in the fireplace, atop a chest of furbelows.  And they’re aghast to learn that in the freezer,

the washer/dryer, even in the shower are still more words.  Foreign words.  Miss Spelled words.  Twelve bawdy nouns that crunch like nuts and a few verbs that stick in the teeth like fresh corn.  Favorite words like jive, pestilence and vestibule.  All of them looking for a poem to nestle in, a place where they can have their say.  Many try but many fail.  For example, squash got squeezed out once then a rabbit was ridiculed, and frigidity, of course, was simply too unfriendly.

 

And yet, I saved them all—stowed many into trunks, gently stuffed some into creels, hid several beneath the soft soles of slippers believing they were destined for freed verses or sestinas.  I’ve broken every law that demands we discard any words we are not using.  Now I’m on the lam; never more than two steps ahead of a laid-off linguist who would tremble to know that loose in my pockets are whistle and luck and forgive.

 

 

 

Revelations:  a stitching

 

I stick my nose in your business.  You look in my window and learn I’m almost always nude when I bathe and everything else is far away.  It takes days, sometimes years, for the soap to fizz.  The full, forgetting moon is no guide and earthquakes only shake.  It’s always the season, though, for a breakthrough even if you don’t believe the sun will always glow like a frontier; that today isn’t like every other season of flies.  Right now, two of them cling to my screen door, dark wings backlit by stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Biographical Statement

 

 

With multiple Pushcart Prize nominations to her credit, Lynne Thompson is author of two chapbooks, We Arrive By Accumulation and Through A Window.  Her first full-length manuscript, Beg No Pardon, won the Perugia Press Book Award as well as the Great Lakes Colleges Association’s New Writers Award.  Recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous journals including Prairie Schooner, African American Review, Ploughshares, Sou’Wester, and Spillway where she is Review & Essays Editor.  Her latest manuscript, Start With a Small Guitar, was published by What Books Press in October, 2013.

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