What a Nice Surprise...

...when you completely forget that you've had a poem accepted for an anthology, which, when it comes in the mail, is quite beautiful, thick and juicy with poetry. And you find your poem amongst works by such luminaries as W.S. Merwin and Jo Harjo and Denise Levertov and Lucille Clifton and Evie Shockley (who I met at AROHO), just to name a few. And the overturned truck on the freeway that lengthened your morning commute by almost an hour and the school room that is your "office" with no heat and the hard conversation you had to have with a colleague fall away as you bask in the glow. 

Thank you to Melissa Tuckey, co-founder of Split This Rock Poetry Festival (which anyone on the East Coast should attend) and The University of Georgia Press for this lovely book. Here is my poem which appears on page 197 in case you want to buy a copy here:

Serengeti Afternoon

To stand upright,

a wildebeest struggles,

wobbly, his legs broken.

In the thin arms

of a baobab tree


ink splotches

across the deep blue sky.

They are waiting

for the wildebeest’s

last fall

before they drop

down around him.

I watch stunned

as the first one, brazen,

tears a strip of flesh

from the still-shuddering flank.

Red means only one thing

in the Serengeti.

My silent vigil

is all I offer

the dying.

For the first time

in my life

I wish for a gun.