A Stand of Swamp Maples in Purcellville, Virginia

by Brian Brodeur

Click to hear Brian Brodeur read “A Stand of Swamp Maples in Purcellville, Virginia” From the window you can see which trees I mean. I used to have a view for twenty acres of pine and poplar woods, a cattle … Continue reading

Love Poem from the Wrong Side of the Rain

by Lynn Powell

What would April do?  Tease hidden meanings from the bulbs, raise the stakes and double my entendres, and bet all my roses on the bottom line. But it’s the season of embarrassed trees, the modest charms of leaf-rot and briar … Continue reading

Conspiracy Theory

by Elizabeth Langemak

In Arkansas the red-wings go down, nearly two thousand slapped out of the night. Beaks pointed, wings drawn to their sides as men shot from cannons, they land unseen, on their sides, like pepper shook out on a small Southern … Continue reading

Barn Gothic

by William Wright

Red as a cardinal in winter, it leans ruined in the gray field, form falling against a sycamore, its older, wiser wife. Closer in, a fox den in the hay tunnel light where green eyes haunt the nearby woods and … Continue reading

Gretel Released Unharmed

by David Moolten

Click to hear David Moolten read his poem, “Gretel Released Unharmed” Holding a knife, the old woman looks out On dark familiar country through the window Which frames her like an oven’s lit square. Trees swallow the girl whole. Her … Continue reading

Incident in Hammond, Indiana

by Gabrielle Freeman

Click to hear Gabrielle Freeman read her poem, “Incident in Hammond, Indiana” Long ago, a black-headed boy slung his mail order rifle over one rangy shoulder, withdrew from the world, unnoticed. His footfalls entered damp woods at the edge of … Continue reading


by William Wright

Click to hear William Wright read his poem, “Nora” —in memory of Patricia Highsmith’s “Oona” In the country of windfall apples and chicory stubble, the blue glow of hidden things molded by every fall, a man left his wife, his … Continue reading

First Day in October

by William Wright

A gray leaf enshrouds the earth. I think of how the rain shifts eastward into Carolina, how the clouds siphon highways of any least shadow. Where is my father but on the moss- ridden hill of his yard, the leaves … Continue reading


by Kathryn Stripling Byer

We used to steal roses. Not to mention the usual zinnias and batchelor buttons. We stashed them in woodpecker holes, arranged them in cowpies.  Dinner’s served, we announced to the cud-chewers. The old women scolded us. No blossoms left for … Continue reading

Home Economics

by Kathryn Stripling Byer

circa 1960 Now girls, look carefully at your embroidery stitches. Blind stitch or hem stitch. Back stitch or chain stitch. Don’t forget whip stitch. And French Knots. A good stitch reveals a wife’s  character. But what if I did not … Continue reading