I am waiting, still
by Yvette Viets Flaten

for that rejection I know is coming,
but why so long, I ask? What can
possibly take this long to decide?

I’m waiting, still, for the mousetrap
to spring, and the neighbor to haul
his garbage cans up the driveway,
and get a leash for his nosing dog.

I am still waiting for spring, for
daffodils, for party dresses and favors,
for church bells and peace.

I am still waiting for a decent night’s sleep.
For I’m sorry. For the right moment to get
started on sorting out the boxes of years
that got stacked up, somehow, without labels.
I’m sorry.

I’m still waiting for all the right answers. Still
sorry about all those waiting boxes with no labels.

IMAGE: Yellow Candy Box by Andy Warhol (1983)

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I am always fascinated by the interweaving of the small and the large issues of life into one day’s fabric, from the scratchings of a mouse to the search for justice, and back again. And the need to be awake to what is in front of our eyes.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Yvette Viets Flaten was born in Denver, Colorado, and grew up in an Air Force family, living in Nevada, North Dakota, and Washington State as well as France, England, and Spain. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish (1974) and a Master of Arts in History (1982) from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. She writes both fiction and poetry and her award-winning poetry (Muse Prize, Jade Ring, Triad) has appeared in numerous journals, including the Wisconsin Academy Review, Rag Mag, Midwest Review, Free Verse, Red Cedar Review, and Barstow and Grand. In May 2020 she was interviewed by Garrison Keillor as part of his Pandemic Poetry Contest. Yvette’s poem “Riding It Out” was one of 10 winners. Find her interview with Garrison Keillor here.