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Poetry Summer 2021    fiction    all issues

Cover of Poetry Summer 2021


Diana Akhmetianova

Monique Jonath
& other poems

Alix Christofides Lowenthal
Before and After
& other poems

Rebbekah Vega-Romero
La Persona Que Quiero Ser
& other poems

Oak Morse
Incandescent Light That Peeks Through Secrets
& other poems

George Kramer
The Last Aspen Stand
& other poems

Elizabeth Sutterlin
Meditations on Mars
& other poems

Holly Marie Roland
& other poems

Devon Bohm
A Bouquet of Cherry Blossoms
& other poems

Ana Reisens
In praise of an everyday object
& other poems

Maxi Wardcantori
The Understory
& other poems

William A. Greenfield
& other poems

Karen L Kilcup
The Sky Is Just About to Fall
& other poems

Pamela Wax
He dreams of birds
& other poems

Mary Jane Panke
& other poems

a mykl herdklotz
Mouettes et Mastodontes
& other poems

Claudia Maurino
Good Pilgrim
& other poems

Mary Pacifico Curtis
One Mystical Day
& other poems

Tess Cooper
Airport Poem
& other poems

Peter Kent
Congress of Ravens
& other poems

Kimberly Sailor
White Women Running
& other poems

Bill Cushing
Creating a Corpse
& other poems

Everett Roberts
& other poems

Susan Marie Powers
Canada Geese
& other poems

Writer's Site

Mary Pacifico Curtis

One Mystical Day

“What do you want? Why are you here?”

I said to the deer that lay in my lawn

a mottle of brown on grass like straw.

He gazed at me   I waited ‘til answered

by a rustling breeze blowing golden

bay leaves from branches through trees,

flakes gusting the yard between the buck

and me. Then he rose   six points

to the sky   ambled uphill

into the trees   into the shade   away.

“What do you want? Why are you here?”

I say as a young deer rests at lawn’s edge

two craggy horns angle   ears twitch and turn

to new sounds on the breeze.

Haze and pine dust

barely conceal six points behind him

the big blinking buck.

The two bring back another day   when we learned

our time would be short   We knew when deer after deer

appeared   and stayed.

White Wings

—June 2011, Endeavor’s final flight

          The thrust, the dare

to dive and penetrate

a hadal realm of eyes

          that don’t know light

          Sticks rubbed together,

ice made into lens,

flint against steel,

          the spark

Endeavor    hurtling

above    continents

          no longer.

She lumbers,

          a vessel atop a cylinder

crossing borders


          from the firmament

          white wings under cumuli

clear to cornea    upward


          the steady climb

to cirro clouds,

vaulted into

a Gods-eye view.

Ubi cáritas est vera, est vera. Deus ibi est.

Easter 2019


A thick wood ridge runs the length of the sanctuary. Between its downward sloping beams, wood rectangles frame 28 ornamental tiles. Multiply that by seven sections & by two sides of the church. My oldest daughter confessed she calculated the number of ceiling tiles for 8 years during weekly masses. We baptized our girls here, memorialized their dad when he succumbed to cancer. “He didn’t want to die,” said the priest. † Holy doorways sheltered Joanie who sat upright in her bed of tatters shouting, “ Leave me alone, get outta here, fuck you, leave me alone.” † The Spanish teacher taught that homosexuality is a sin. Bullying began in the primary grades. Parking lot chatter broke marriages & provoked the occasional restraining order. Moms met up for kickboxing & shared wisdom on sizing implants for perfect tits. “We are the body of Christ. We have to be God’s hands, feet, voice.” One Christmas Eve, the priest asked who had come to earth. In an echoing moment of silence, a 3 year-old answered, “Santa Claus!” † Christmas yet again. I snarl under a mask of smiles in the sanctuary. Year after year.


Notre Dame de Paris burned at the beginning of Holy Week.

             Our Lady of Paris.

Mother of continents and genocides.

Mother to immigrant boats tossed in high waves.

Mother church to fathers and mothers

                                                    torn from little children.

Our Lady’s steeple falls.

             Votive memorials persist.

flame against flame.

             Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble . . .

Mary Pacifico Curtis is the author of Between Rooms and The White Tree Quartet, both chapbooks published by WordTech’s Turning Point imprint, as well as poetry and prose that has appeared in The Crab Orchard Review, The Rumpus, The Tupelo Quarterly, LOST Magazine, The Naugatuck River Review, and Narrative Magazine. Her work is also included in numerous anthologies. She was a 2012 Joy Harjo Poetry Finalist (Cutthroat Journal), 2019 Poetry Finalist in The Tiferet Journal, a non-fiction finalist in The 48th New Millenium Writings contest, and a 2021 finalist in the Tupelo Quarterly non-fiction open.

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