Our poem of the week is by Michigan poet, Joy Gaines-Friedler. It comes from a series of poems, nine of which were just published in our Spring issue of Third Wednesday. This one was chosen for its wonderful images.


The sea surprisingly warm,
the sky a blue room I wait in. Fearless
pelicans plunge headlong into waves.

I walk the imagery of my mother’s life.
There are no birds in these images,
I have never seen her dip her toe into the tide

never seen her startled by stars, no wonderment
at the way water ripples or forms clouds.
She is never looking up.

Here in the space between waves
where a kind of sanctity floats
I praise what I can:

A porcelain blue saucer,
the smell of Aqua Net & acetate
nails polished Frank Sinatra smooth,  

the Formica table worn pale from hours of Solitaire,
cravings to leave – hers
                                        as much as mine.

I return to her room –  keep shut the blinds,
the way she always liked them.

The day clings to the edge.

Outside a cloud of a thousand starlings
move in unison, left then right – then left.
They land. Settled-in for the night.