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Jacklyn Potter



THE GIFT

He arrived at evening with pink gladioli.
Stems clustered in his hand,
the stalks curved upward
a bright cobra spreading
through his atmosphere.

She brought the bouquet
to her lips in its fullness,
then touched his wrist.  At her window
a long blade of oak
tapped its way to barrenness.

At dawn, new petals
thin as tissue paper
raise their blossoms.
From a porcelain vase
they strike the air.


THE OLD BORDERS

Mouth near another mouth
In a miscellaneous universe;

Of all the spark plugs, wing nuts, star bolts!
One mouth closing in upon another,

Not merely for one tongue
To touch another here are

Two mouths in vast territory
Each moving toward a closed space opening,

As hungry as a prayer for the dying,
Mouths with ears filtering soft-spoken demands,

Trying not to hear parting
Sighs, tentative farewells, endings,

Broken vows, violated treaties, bombed truces,
The huge despair of nations

One rosy lip against another
A whisper for defense.







Jacklyn Potter
Jacklyn Potter's poetry and translations have appeared in The Hollins Critic, the MacGuffin, Poets On, Plainsong, Poet Lore, The Washington Review, Stone Country, and Jazz a Go-Go (Warsaw, Poland). Her work has also been anthologized in Weavings 2000, Maryland Millenial Anthology; Hungry as We Are: An Anthology of Washington Area Poets (Washington Writerís Publishing House); Quiet Music: A Plainsong Readerís Anthology; If I Had My Life to Live Over, I'd Pick More Daisies, and If I Had a Hammer: Womenís Work in Poetry, Fiction and Photographs (Papier-Mache Press); in the WPFW-FM Anthology (Bunny and Crocodile Press); and in The Stones Remember, Native Israeli Poetry (The Word Works). She was lead editor of Cabin Fever: Poets at Joaquin Miller's Cabin, 1984-2001 (The Word Works, 2003). In 1994, Delos, a journal of translations, featured her interview with Richard Harteis and William Meredith. During 1994-95, District Lines included her Spanish translations in a children's literary poster series on Washington Metro buses. Journey Proud: Southern Women's Writings (Carolina Wren Press) included her chapter about living on the Virginia Eastern Shore. For 21 years, she has directed the Joaquin Miller Cabin Poetry Series, readings under the stars in Rock Creek Park. Ms. Potter has received several fellowships from the D.C. Commission on the Arts. As a child, Ms. Potter performed as a singer on radio, television, and stage.




                                    

 

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