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Lucia Galloway is a Los Angeles-area poet who co-hosts a poetry reading series at the public library in Claremont. Transplanted from the small-town and rural Midwest to the urban West Coast, she sees her poetry as nurtured by two cultures. Although she has worked picking berries, packing peaches, detasseling corn, checking groceries, and feeding the mangle in a linen-supply laundry, she has spent her adult life behind the teacher’s desk or at the library in front of a computer screen. She holds a Masters in English and American Literature from U.C. Berkeley and an MFA in creative writing from Antioch Los Angeles and has taught literature and writing at the high-school and college levels. When she can, she travels to distant locales, dipping into their history and culture.

Galloway is the author of Venus and Other Losses (Plain View, 2010) and a chapbook, Playing Outside (Finishing Line, 2005).  Her poems appear widely in print and on line, with recent work published or forthcoming in Comstock Review, The Dirty Napkin, Foundling Review, Red River Review, Poemeleon, and Innisfree Poetry Journal.  Her work has been recognized with several awards and prizes, including the Robert Haiduke Prize from the Bread Loaf School of English and Pushcart and Best of the Net nominations.

 

SEASONAL

The calendar flaunts an oriole.
Forgotten are the indigo bunting,
the tern, the ring-billed gull—
all torn off, tossed in the bin.

A thesaurus nestles beside the rhyming dictionary
that whispers of weather and tether.

The paperweight is a sturdy bubble
awaiting the day the notes and reminders
take wing and fly in formation
to join the grand migration.

The calendar flaunts an oriole.
A thesaurus nestles beside the rhyming dictionary.
The paperweight is a sturdy bubble.
The bathrobe worries its wearer
over a stray feather in its pocket.

Where did it come from, and where
now is the bird that lost it?

 

published in Foundling Review

 

TERZANELLE: DRY ARROYOS

This is a climate of summer weather
where caked earth cracks and grasses scorch.
This is a sky where no clouds gather.

Morning sun invades the screened-in porch.
Shadows shrink, the frail shade quivers.
Where caked earth cracks and grasses scorch,

lizards scud along the dusty rivers,
our dry arroyos, the tumbled stones.
Shadows shrink, the frail shade quivers.

Long evening’s cathedral light atones.
High noon’s glare, but supper-talk rebounds.
Our dry arroyos, the tumbled stones.

The heady darkness settles, interval that bounds
both dusk and dawn.  Old women understand
high noon’s glare, and supper-talk rebounds.

Night finds its legs.  Coyotes band.
This is a climate of summer weather,
both dusk and dawn. Old women understand
this is a sky where no clouds gather.

Published in Poemeleon

DEAR EARTHLING

In the dream of white ground, black trees, blue dazzle
In the reality of soot-flecked slush under dishwater sky
In the loss of your favorite ring in a snowball fight
and the florist-stall daisies blue or magenta when you wanted white
In “Good morning” and “How are you?”
In the snatch of tango from the door of a bar
In the loofa, bath towel, and Kiehl’s Coriander Lotion
In loon’s call from the lake and the loose v of the mallard’s wake
In calico carp kissing the surface of the botanic garden pond
and half a dozen hens scratching, swallowing grubs in their yard
In a month-old calf grazing pasture near its mother
In its dull-eyed destiny, forced to gorge on corn
In the ear of a weanling pig and the breath from a horse’s nose
In the way you listen as carefully to the kitten’s meow
as you listen to the questions of your children
here find the bedrock thrusting through the scree—
the children, small whistles piercing thicknesses of air.

Published in Innisfree Poetry Journal

 

 

 

Lucia Galloway
2011 Lucia Galloway

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