Archives for posts with tag: postaday

Moving Day
by Bruce Sager

I peeled out of that driveway
and made my way over here,
to this new place, this place
you’ve stopped by just now
with a cake in your hands
and a smile on your face, and so
here we are, you and I, smiling,
standing with such fine patience
on this new porch

all of the day
spread before us
like a fresh cloth
over the rooftops.

IMAGE: “Home Sweet Home” cake. Image found at


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Bruce Sager, famous for 15 minutes as author of Famous and The Pumping Station, lives in Westminster, Maryland. His work has won publication through contests judged by Billy Collins, Dick Allen and William Stafford. Several new books – four of poetry, one of vaguely hilarious short stories – are forthcoming in 2016-2017 (via Echo Point Books, Hyperborea Publishing and BrickHouse Books).

The Return
by Alice Venessa Bever

You pack bags and a car your mom prays will make it over the mountains to Michigan. Your Subaru Loyale has a strange rattling noise you’d been assured was just an incidental defect of the 1992 model.

You do moves from these mountains once or twice after seasons and breakups though not like this. This move has pomp. It has circumstances of goodbyes and yet you don’t close your bank account. The mountain moves to then follow will be leavings for awhile. With this one you have your car painted by friends in early July. The fifth to be precise. No one wants wine, the sunrise had been attempted the night prior.

You look out your window now and see Vesuvius. The Tetons are burned in your mind, however, along with that West Kelly night with stars, holding up your twenties because they were still (barely) there, sweetly, along with your oblivion of failure or unemployment or tragedy. You think of your car parked in a lot in Alpine. Probably full of mice and certainly memories you won’t recall till you unpack photos that stick together and dresses that no longer fit.

You leave grad school in Michigan and come back to Jackson in the dark of November (a rental because the Loyale blew a head gasket on 80 in Nebraska). It is a soft return. There are hugs and uncertainties and exhales. You return again after Italy. You are still (barely) on the small side of your thirties. The mountains are the same. Your best friend never returned from Nicaragua.

Choices move through winds over mountains and volcanos and you are part of the loss and growth in their architectures. Through and past, into and over: you return.

Upon reentry there are few questions about motives.

You belong.

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: July 5, 2009, approximately 10 p.m., Jackson, Wyoming. The next day I would leave later than I should have to start a drive to Michigan.


Alice Venessa Bever
loves to make things: poetic stuffs, loud gasping noises during a funny joke, friends, pie. She lives currently in Naples, Italy, where she sings and carb-loads as well as teaches things like Science and Math to small children who will surely forgive her. She started performing at age 4, around the same time discovered that painting outside the lines and on the tops of feet is more fun (see photo). Since 2002 she has lived in China, Germany, Italy, Wyoming, Chicago, Michigan making art things as well as teaching. She is proudly still a resident of Jackson. Until her license expires or she moves back. Again.

by Marjorie Maddox

Shadows bloom and wilt across the patio,
our new home sheds flakes of bright paint,
and, of course, it is October; the neighbors we don’t know
hang pumpkin lights like lamb’s blood over the threshold,
and from their porch rocking chairs stare at us, the strangers.

We disguise ourselves with smiles and wave.
And why not? Let the leaves fall and the grass grow high,
our new life floats around us in the frost-free air,
and we own the chaos of autumn; the weeds
would grow between our toes if we’d linger

into another two seasons. We are giddy enough
for a picket fence or a pink flamingo
and bring out Baby to see the splendor.
“Here,” we say like good parents, “is the color red
and over there, the irrepressible orange of joy.”

SOURCE: Previously published in Local News from Someplace Else and Your Daily Poem.

PHOTO: “White Picket Fence” by Edward Fielding. Prints available from


NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: As your prompt suggests and a number of my poems in Local News from Someplace Else show, moving to a new location can bring about a range of emotions, from fear and extreme loneliness to excitement and contentment. Although I have many that address the former, here is one about the latter, written soon after my daughter was born and we had just moved out of a duplex into our first “home.”

PHOTO: The author in 2012 with her nephew Tatum on the rocking chair mentioned in the poem.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sage Graduate Fellow of Cornell University (MFA) and Professor of English and Creative Writing at Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, Marjorie Maddox has published 11 collections of poetry—including True, False, None of the Above (Poiema Poetry Series); Local News from Someplace Else (Wipf and Stock); Wives’ Tales (forthcoming 2016 Seven Kitchens Press), Transplant, Transport, Transubstantiation (Yellowglen Prize); and Perpendicular As I (Sandstone Book Award)—the short story collection What She Was Saying (2017 Fomite Press), and over 450 stories, essays, and poems in journals and anthologies. Co-editor of Common Wealth: Contemporary Poets on Pennsylvania (Penn State Press), she also has published two children’s books with several forthcoming. For more information, please see

Why Wyoming?
— for Jennifer, who asked
by Sara Clancy

I’ve been up
with the wind, trying to write down
an explanation for this charmed
move. In Cheyenne the light is strange,
with no trees to shadow the beauty
of the prairie. The truth

is, Wyoming is hard to love and truth
demands recognition of its harshness. Up
on Jim Mountain, beauty
surrenders its solace and stares down
on the rest of us. We are strange
to this landscape, which has charmed

so few. We have been charmed
before and always, the truth
is hidden by expectation. Strange
how truth is exposed: a Coopers hawk glides up
to Elephant Rock, as the sky bears down
on this spare beauty.

In Issaquah, beauty
was simple, the forest charmed
by beads of rain, which came down
with the certainty of truth.
We all looked up
to Mount Rainier, that strange

volcano floating over Puget Sound. So strange,
like her sister Helen, whose beauty
soothed the landscape and then went up
in cinders. She charmed
us into inattention, then demanded truth
with a terrible insistence that rained down

in rock. Now the woods, downed
in ash, mock the flattery of strange
transients like us, who betray truth
by looking only for beauty,
for that charmed
acre to never give up.

Up on Medicine Wheel, Wyoming is downright charmed.
Strange how her beauty is a hard uncomfortable truth.

IMAGE: “Grand Tetons and the Snake River [Grand Tetons National Park, Wyoming]” by Ansel Adams (1942).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: As it turned out, we were dilettantes at Wyoming life, lasting less than two years. Though it is an unforgettable and truly beautiful state, it apparently takes heartier souls than ours to withstand those ever-present 30-mph winter winds along with temperatures in the teens. We are still looking for that charmed acre, though we would be content with something much smaller, …and warmer.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sara Clancy is a Philadelphia transplant to the Desert Southwest. She is an Associate Editor for Poetry at Kentucky Review and, among other places, her poems have appeared in Off the CoastThe Linnet’s WingsAvatarCrab Creek ReviewThe Madison ReviewVerse WisconsinMain Street Rag, Antiphon, and Houseboat, where she was a featured poet.

Taking Flight
by Cristina M. R. Norcross

I was sitting on a plane wearing two sweatshirts,
a light jacket, my new charcoal wool coat,
which my mother bought for me as a send-off gift,
and practically every piece of good jewelry I owned.
Who knew what happened to luggage on an 8-hour flight?
Plus, coats on me meant more room for shoes
in my massive Samsonite.

It was just two weeks after our wedding,
and we were looking out the window,
struggling to see the faces of our parents
in the terminal.
The clouds expanded and filled the sky,
masking my tearful farewell.
Skies unknown were before us,
as well as a spartan apartment in Durham,
with tiny bugs in the refrigerator.
Very soon after, a brick bungalow by the sea
in Newcastle, was our home
No shower, just a tub.
For me, this was roughing it.

My husband found milk crates left behind by the landlord,
which he stacked with a piece of plywood.
This was my first desk in England,
where I wrote my first short story ever published,
“Angie’s Room.”
Never did those four hunter-green walls
and shag green carpeting
look so beautiful,
as the day the postman delivered
that acceptance letter.

We were lost, and then we found ourselves.
It took eight hours on a plane,
and treading water in a foreign land,
to bond us forever, as explorers in life.
Nothing says adventure
like wearing everything you own
on a Trans-Atlantic flight.

Cristina M. R. Norcross
Copyright 2016

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION:  The author and her husband  John, Hampstead Heath Pond, U.K., circa 1996.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: My husband and I lived in the UK for five years after getting married. It was one of the most enriching experiences, filled with both adventures and struggles. We were just at the beginning of things — careers, marriage, identity. All things seemed possible. They still do. Twenty-one years and two children later, we are still traveling, still learning, and still leaning into love. I wouldn’t have it any other way.


Cristina M. R. Norcross
is the author of seven poetry collections. Her most recent books include Amnesia and Awakenings (Local Gems Press, 2016), and Still Life Stories (Aldrich Press, 2016).  Her works have been published, or are forthcoming, in The Toronto Quarterly, Your Daily Poem, Lime Hawk, The Poetry Storehouse, Right Hand Pointing, and Pirene’s Fountain, among others.  Cristina’s work also appears in numerous anthologies. She was a semi-finalist in the 2015 Concrete Wolf Chapbook Competition and a finalist in the 2015 Five Oaks Press Chapbook Contest.  Cristina is the founding editor of the online poetry journal, Blue Heron Review. She is the co-founder of Random Acts of Poetry and Art Day and a contributing artist to The Art Ambush Project. Find out more about this poet at:

The Big Move
by Rick Blum

Today, I won’t be scouring our oversized, overstuffed house
for cherished knick-knacks and gimcracks that have
– over the last 30 years – attached themselves to our lives
like crusty barnacles on the Mayflower

I’m not going to sort through a Vesuvius of clothes
– fermenting in the attic since our post-teenagers were toddlers –
to be tossed into black trash bags marked either
Keep or Goodwill

Nor will I drag out long forgotten dishes, moldy fish tanks,
or rickety Papasan chairs needing to be cleaned
and photographed, then posted on Craig’s List
at prices guaranteed to attract ravenous bargain hunters

And hauling two-wheeled tricycles, faded fairy-tale princess
accessories and one-piece-short jigsaw puzzles to the dump
is totally off this day’s to-do list, as is touching-up
the scuffed baseboards my wheelchair has kissed far too often

Instead, I’ll break last night’s fast with old friends
Dilbert and Doonesbury, then catch up on email,
fiddle with Facebook, and, maybe, google
“Papasan chair origin” just out of curiosity

Later, when the minutes start to stretch into endlessness,
I may try to infuse the loveliness of my wheelchair enforced,
leisurely life into simple verses, which I will massage
and remassage and remassage again, until every last descriptor,
every metaphor, every alliterative edifice is poetically perfect
…and a complete lie

© Rick Blum 2016

IMAGE: Papasan chair

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem was written in the days between accepting an offer for our house of 30 years and moving day. Being confined to a wheelchair, I was unable to be much help in the packing process, which sounds wonderful, until you have no other choice, which is what I tried to describe here.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rick Blum has been chronicling life’s vagaries through essays and poetry for more than 25 years during stints as a nightclub owner, high-tech manager, market research mogul, and, most recently, alter kaker. His writings have appeared in Boston Literary Magazine, Thought Notebook Journal, and Leannán, among others. He is also a frequent contributor to the Humor Times, and has been published in numerous poetry anthologies. Mr. Blum’s poem, “The Inertia of Permanence,” was awarded first place in the 2014 Carlisle Poetry Contest. His poem, “Tomfoolery,” received honorable mention in The Boston Globe Deflategate poetry challenge.

The Apartment
by Susana H. Case

When the old man died, he left a swarm
of guns in the apartment,
and a son
who put a mattress, his soft unicorn
in the middle of the living room.
He could sleep with less fear
on the rotted-wood floor,
doors dead-bolted, two locks each.

He monitored the rhythms of the wind.
The squeak of a neighbor’s wheelchair
grew a chorus of voices, fig tree
sprouted inside his skull,
brain matter battered as the sheetrock
walls, never telling him: relax.

He hesitated to voyage
the street, amass more food.
He shook at the starburst
of aisles, the memory of everything
boxed and canned, lighting as bad
as the last time he boarded a bus.

People came to look
at the apartment. He cussed
and wouldn’t let them in, so
an uncle carted him off someplace
safer. The new tenants
called each other honey, cringed
at the guns, salvaged the floors,
and replaced the doors.

With incense and chants, we burned out
the spirits of hoarded food,
wonder how much the father
imprisoned the son, how much the son
imprisoned the father.

IMAGE: Ritual with sage to clear the energy of a dwelling.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The prior owner of the apartment I currently live in passed away in the apartment and left it in the state described in the poem. Some of what’s in the poem I knew before I moved in. Some information was reconstructed afterward by talking to others in the building. And some of what is in the poem is imagined.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Susana H. Case’s newest book is 4 Rms w Vu (Mayapple Press, 2014). Author of four full-length poetry collections and four chapbooks, including The Scottish Café which was re-released in a Polish-English version, Kawiarnia Szkocka, by Opole University Press, she is a Professor at the New York Institute of Technology.

Stuck in a Stack of Furniture
by Patrick Lee Marshall

When my wife showed me pictures
shot for her photography class
and that old truck slid into view
on her computer screen,
my mind skipped back to 1952,
twenty-two moves ago

I was nearly eight years old.
My family was moving
from Munday, Texas, to Rosenberg, Texas.

On an International truck flatbed,
furniture stacked around the perimeter,
tarps tied down to cover everything,
in a cave in the middle of all our belongings,
with a tunnel leading to the back to enter or escape,
my sister and I would ride nearly 450 miles—
for two and a half days and two nights—
bouncing to a new unwanted home
far away from memories and friends.
This exciting, “camping out” experience,
became a nightmare we feared would never end.
We could not play any of our board games.
Pieces bounced at potholes and joints in the highway.
After the first few laughs, we grew frustrated
when the jumping checkers would crown themselves.
I accidentally kicked one of my boots off the truck
when I tried to see where we were during a rainstorm.
My sister threw up and we rode in the stink for hours
inside a sweltering igloo in the hot Texas sun.
We slept half awake, half scared, at Texas roadside parks.
We ate bologna and bread without mayo or mustard
at every meal, washing it down with warm water.
We quickly grew tired of the trip and each other,
relieved when Dad finally said we were there,
happy to be there, no longer caring where “there” was.

We wonder if parents today tried something like that
and were stopped by the highway patrol, would they
get in serious trouble for moving in an unreasonable
and unsafe manner?

PHOTO: The author (right) and his sister after arrival in Rosenberg, Texas, with the family’s International flatbed truck to the far right.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: The move from Munday to Rosenberg, Texas, was the tenth move for my sister and me. We moved seven or eight more times before the family started moving apart.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Patrick Lee Marshall began learning poetry after joining the Denton Poets’ Assembly (DPA) in 2011. He currently serves as a Councilor for the Poetry Society of Texas, V.P. of DPA, and V.P. of the Keller Writers’ Association. His poetry and business articles have been published in over 35 books, anthologies, business journals, and other media, including Encore: Prize Poems of the NFSPS, A Galaxy of Verse, Blue Hole Magazine, Merging Visions, Inkwell Echoes, Hunger for Peace, Silver Birch Press, NCR Healthcare Hotline, Georgia Law Review, and Texas Poetry Calendar. He lives in Keller, Texas, with his wife and three cats.

Another Move
by Siwsan Gimprich

By the time I was three
I’d lived in four houses, flown
in two planes, twice been driven
across the state of New York –
no mean feat for the rusty
Hudson-Nash station wagon we could
afford. Peripatetic is a most apt
description of my childhood.
Never more than five years in a place.
But we were a family
Dad, Mom, and me,
then James and John,
an occasional dog or cat
and always the garden.
Vegetables put up every fall
the rainbow shelves
bottles of beans, green and wax, tomatoes,
carrots, and beets. Jars of luscious
spiced peaches and pears.
Sweet, fragrant bushels
from a farmer’s roadside stand had been transformed
into magical orbs of spices and mystery.
They fed us through the winter.
They were home. That and the books.
The books that attended us in every move.
Agassi and Eliot. Linaeus and Kipling.

One winter we chased Old Possum’s cats
and the next, we explored jungles
with Mowgli, my dad’s voice
growling and hissing in the night.
Home had changed location when I was 3 months,
3 years, 6, 10, 14, 15,
and then I left home, for the first time
when I was 17, and then, permanently
when I was 21.
At first I was homeless.
not destitute and streetbound,
but without that home I had never
been without. Away,

I floated just an inch
or so, above the floor. Tethered by hair,
so long I could hide myself
as I gave myself – a handful
of air and clouds building.
One day, I sat. on a sofa
made of wood. I held a warm
cup and watched as sparrows hopped
from the clothesline outside my kitchen
window down to a window sill on the fourth floor.
Those birds, and the way I could feel
the grumbling of the subway
five floors down and then some
were a definition.

Home had changed meaning –
I hate it when that happens – words
intertwine and become something
else. The orbit and satellites altered,
but I was still in a capsule
of books and now,
it was Beethoven and Lowell
or Mendelssohn and Strand.
A reconfiguration, but home,

PHOTO: The author with her mother and brothers in Grand Forks, North Dakota (Easter 1965).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This poem emerged from the wonderful prompt by Silver Birch (one of many that have resulted in good work). As always, I write, some call it muse-driven, and then clean up.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Siwsan Gimprich grew up, as she says, peripatetically, criss-crossing the Midwest. She has grown roots in New Jersey since the birth of her eldest, 35 years ago. Writing has been a constant throughout her life. Sometimes at a peak and other times at a complete standstill, but always the way she measures herself.

Wedding Dress at Home
About Your Mother’s Wedding Dress
by Esther Rohm

The apartment husk still holds the shape
of our life gutted out, left now with only rubbish
and my wedding dress. The dress hangs
bereaved in the closet. I plan to forget it.
(If you can lie by omission, can you steal by giving?
By leaving something unwanted? I feel the sly
thrill of possible crime.) Choice was not my
birthright. I’d bought this for its price, hid it
from my own eyes after it fell off and I sank
from bride to wife. We never had a chance. I mean
the dress and me. See, I’m warding off the question
you may never ask. Boys aren’t nostalgic
over that. And if you have a sister, if she wants
to have my dress, I’ll just tell her I lost it.

PHOTO: “Wedding Dress” by photographmd, used by permission.


NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: On the heels of my husband’s brain surgery and the birth of our first child, we were evicted. I stood in our empty bedroom at the end of that move and felt a lot of things. As I stared at the wedding dress I’d tried to forget in the back of my closet, I decided to abandon it there. I’ve never regretted doing that.

PHOTO: The author and her first child after the move the wedding dress didn’t make (Fairborn, Ohio 2001).

Esther17BW 1 of 1A

Esther Rohm
is fascinated by human beings. She writes poetry, fiction, and fantasy while undercover as an office worker. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she was kidnaped by mischievous sprites and deposited in Ohio, where she continues to live. Her writing has appeared in Dime Show Review, and she is one of 35 authors featured in A Journey of Words (Scout Media, 2016).