Backscratcher

As a child, I, the Yankee from Jersey,

would visit Betty, my aunt and godmother

in New Orleans, for summers drenched

in mosquitoes and melted popsicles.

Unlike my mother, she let me run

barefoot . . .

–Excerpt from “Backscratcher” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016). First published in Penniless Press.

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How Language Lives

. . . During the long summer days,

the language of the sun

illuminates the human species,

sparked again in love affairs, birthing pains,

the lifelong counting of money,

the last flight of the sparrow.

–Excerpt from “How Language Lives” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016).

Waiting for Crickets

. . . If blood were magic, it would

conjure your serrated wings

grinding like small gears

in the tropical dark,

a rumor of alleluias.

–Excerpt from “Waiting for Crickets” from Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016). First published in Off the Coast.

Louisiana, Night

Here dusk never cools the air

while rocking the cradle of earth

with the loud lullaby of locusts.

–Excerpt from “Louisiana, Night” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016). First published in New Laurel Review.

Digging Out the Daisies

. . . Dug into the dark region

between an old forsythia

and a yew planted to hide

the elbows of rusty pipes,

they risk everything to find . . .

a new communion.

–Excerpt from “Digging Out the Daisies” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016). Published in Hawaii Pacific Review and The Cresset.

Dawn

came blundering in today

through rain-battered sills,

shutters banging in the violet night,

and the fists of half-closed clouds

pounding the windows . . .

–Excerpt from “Dawn” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016). First published in Stride Magazine.

What My Father Taught Me

. . . He was my fighter, my magician,

my master of pretense, and the day

mother took too many aspirin,

he could do anything for me

but make me disappear.

–Excerpt from “What My Father Taught Me” in Edges by Donna Pucciani (Purple Flag, Chicago, 2016).