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3 Poems by Priya Keefe

weekend parent

we roll through afternoon

past stone people waiting for the bus

we spoke along

wheels dull as cloud cover

the canal shines

like a second chance

wind and sun play the poplars

the drawbridge hums

the tune i sing

i am seventeen she is forty seven

i duckling behind her

rainbow leg warmers

we somersault down

the lane lined with blackberries

and splashed with shade

just one more curve - one more

we turn back

two miles after we should

nearly home we brake

for fish-n-chips and toss fries for gulls

it hurts to get back on

but we know we will make it

to the house of mirrors

green fern curtains

billowing like sails

over where i rest

in my room of doors


Index of Color

Caput Mortuum

Voice, 5 – 11

“Are you sure?”, 15

“No”, 17

Running up a sleeve, 23

Coming out, bland white apple, 23

See also Mouse


Mouse, 3

On the windowsill, 3

Remembering crumbs, 33

Us, 86

Billboard in each others' lives, 84


Rain, 8

Recycling, 6, 7


Dissolving, 1

Joining the others, 11

No two alike, 2


Forging Departure

- after Charles Simic

Others were leaving

were others

and us leaving

We left behind fire

by becoming smoke

Our tongue was the switchback

Breath the falling/rising road

I saw a child with no string

borne by changing winds

Our arms drifted away from our torsos: less to keep warm

We walked into empire’s din, not looking back


Priya Keefe was raised in a working-class family in Seattle, Washington. Until she was 18, she’d traveled just in three states and British Columbia. Keefe’s poetry has appeared on a Dublin lamppost, in Seattle buses, and in Seattle City Council meetings. It has been spied in Five:2:One, The American Journal of Poetry, Outlook Springs, The Nervous Breakdown, CounterPunch, and elsewhere. Now she teaches in a small town in Southern Louisiana and shares a home with her partner, her mother, and too many pets.

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