Poetry Reading: Wrobel, Marshall + Cowperthwaite

read from their works Friday, May 30, 7:00 PM
at the Harlow Gallery, 160 Water Street in Hallowell
Suggested contribution: $3, light refreshments served. 
For further information call Ted Bookey at 685-3636

♦ ♦ ♦

Senior Discount — by Anna Wrobel
I have entered the age
of senior discounts
on buses and trains.

Offering my license
as proof to skeptics
I’ll be damned if I’ll hide my age
and forego the ten percent.

It took decades to get here
a dead mother
a dead father
two grown children
grandson in Vermont.

But I got here
even across the icy steppes
of years in reformation
out of too many fragments
my children the glue
and the victims of
my Kristallnacht epoch.

That they love me
wish me well always
is testament to
human understanding
is witness to
redemptive grace.

Still times I do things wrong
but more quickly take correction
my own and others.

I will have all the
senior discounts offered
having worked too hard
for my place as an elder.

♦ ♦ ♦ 

The Bed — by Stephanie Marshall
Yours from a different marriage
the headboard I hated is gone.

An electric blanket with dual settings
replaces your body.

At my left side bedcovers stay neatly tucked
strewn with pens, paper, books,
two pairs of glasses, cell phone and journal.
An empty mug of tea balances near
the upper corner.

Queen size is more than enough room
to toss back the covers when
a flash of heat decides to strike.

I check phone messages
while propped up by soft pillows.

Your voice asks, “Are you happy now?”

♦ ♦ ♦

Shhh! Come See!  — By Steve Cowperthwaite

The Hardwoods are undressing.
Nudists at heart,
the Ash eagerly cast off every stitch last week.
Like bean poles now, except for that matron
with voluptuous trunk and gnarly protuberances.
They will be the last to dress in spring.

Birch, Poplar, Maple
Shimmied, swayed, gyrated last night
to rhythm and beat of waves on shore
eliciting lusty shouts, whistles, howls of delight,
tormented sighs from overly aroused west winds.
Smug and saucy now in next to nothing,
November will tolerate none of their foolishness.

Blushing Swamp Maples will shed
their sarongs sometime soon.
Many Aristocratic Oaks are still
in their proper summer green dresses.
Others have slipped into more intimate ware,
foxy orange chemises, sultry scarlet camisoles.

Beech will be damned
if she will drop as much as her hanky.
Though somewhat jaundiced now,
she will remain clad into winter,
be clinging to tattered brown rags
until her sap is up for
new, spring finery.

Conifers in their winter dress greens
seem unmoved, oblivious to it all
until Hackmatack slips on his yellow gown,
stands with arms extended like a ballerina,
suddenly lets all fall to his knobby knees.
Pine, Hemlock, Spruce groan, whisper, shudder.
Little tolerance hereabout for cross undressers