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Connie Post: California Poets Part 5, Three Poems

Connie Post

December 22nd, 2022

California Poets: Part V

Connie Post

Three Poems

Acquiescence Do you know how to suffer well do you break your teeth with it do you bury words like a mortician who owns the only graveyard in town do you pretend you can create distance between the disembodied hand that reaches for you in a dark room do you know how to reassemble broken bones and pretend it’s a structure of mercy do you tell strangers you’re fine when they stare at you in the grocery store do you tuck in your swollen mouth do you understand why your arteries carry blood away from a heart sometimes at night I put an abacus in my bed and try to count the beatings this body endured I still don’t know if they broke my spirit

November Stroll An evening walk with my grandson he asks me questions about leaves their orange and red shades he wants to know why they fall off the trees I tell him we can look it up when we get home I accidentally step on a small stone and almost falter and wonder how I made it this far now with a cane in one hand and a small satchel at my hip I feel like I’ve always been a grandparent always had someone older quietly walking next to me answering questions about the moon telling me how to stay safe telling me how long to stay in the closet in my room telling me if I’m quiet enough someday I will escape promising me that one day no one will put their hands around my neck ever again I’ve held that child invisible though she was until she could finally walk in the cadence of my shifting bones with her unbraided hair and her unclenched hand

The Short Answer is not subservient to the long answer the short answer has been shaved down with a thousand iterations of a story you need to forget the long answer involves the wide mouth of a river you’ve never seen the long answer makes you clear your throat before you speak I turn away from all the words and irrational thoughts I don’t understand I sit down at an empty desk take out my old maps and study again the secret pathways back to myself I sit on an old wooden chair it wobbles beneath me like a question unanswered

Author Bio:

Connie Post served as first Poet Laureate of Livermore, California Her work has appeared in Calyx, Comstock Review, One, Cold Mountain Review, Slipstream, Spillway, River Styx, Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review and Verse Daily. Her first full length Book “Floodwater” (Glass Lyre Press) won the 2014 Lyrebird Award. Her poetry awards include the Liakoura Award, and the Crab Creek Poetry Award. Her newest book “Prime Meridian” was released in January 2020 and was a distinguished favorite in the Independent Press Awards.


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