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Susan Morse

Fact:  Spring Continues Unabashed


as I step out my front door and disturb 

a quilt covering of pink snow, the drift 

of cherry blossoms which has spiraled 

down under a faint breeze and grey skies. 


Good, no one around!  I can walk in peace

on my almost-daily Covid-19 route, noting 

recent dressings of orange, red and plum leaves 

on Japanese maples, the purple of wisteria 

at the green two-story where the woman owns 

a tabby cat named Toby, her new planting 

of a cream-colored snowball bush just 

coming into bloom.  


Everywhere color:  vibrant!  

including a white nitrile glove flattened

on the corner of 14th and Court Street, 

the left index finger askew as if some large 

or small 

tragedy happened here in the mud,  

while nearby blue centaura and purple 

bearded iris stand tall, averting their eyes, 

crowns pointing skyward as if to avoid 

all the dirty little secrets 

of April 2020.



2020 Was the Lost Year


When time frayed piece by piece, 

a hand-sewn quilt relinquishing its seams.


Though seemingly stitched in haphazard patterns

like the quilts of Gees Bend, the blocks awry, 


threads and boundaries sometimes shearing, our history 

before seemed artfully sewn and delicately maintained.  


Now the needle and thimble no longer fit our clumsy fingers,

each uptick of thread too taut with friction, each new piece


a bit more crooked, leaning into the general decline 

of our civilities.

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