Sunday Apr 14

Parker Suzanne Parker’s recent and forthcoming publications include Serving House, Rattapallax, Macguffin, Cider Press Review, and others. Her creative non-fiction is published by the U of Wisconsin P in the travel anthology Something to Declare. She is a winner of the Alice M. Sellars Award from the Academy of American Poets and was a Poetry Fellow at the Prague Summer Seminars. Suzanne co-directs the creative writing program at Brookdale Community College and teaches poetry workshops at the very tip of Manhattan with the Uptown Writers Group.

Reckless Shooting


I did not cry
when the goose was shot.
The goose did not die
even after the kid aimed,
squeezed off the second
round. It twitched
in the frozen pond's center,
a wing jerking through the air.
You turned to yell at the kid
who earlier had leaned my cheek
against a rifle's stock
so I could better shatter
the clay plates he released.
But he was gone, left us
to walk back to the hotel room,
the bluegrass festival
and another night
of picking and drinking but
I did not cry as I lay on the bed,
thinking of how to make the banjoes,
fiddles stop, you, beside me,
snapping your long fingers
that would soon smell of me.
"Sweetie, don't cry."
But I wasn't.
It was just
that kid driving us back, stopping,
showing off for me, for you,
shooting all that beauty,
a stain spreading across snow.
Then you, licking your thumb
to rub me,
to make me come,
because you'd learned the trick of it
between my legs,
getting hard, pushing,
"Don't cry," you said.



Dandelion Fire


They have gone wild and shimmy
in their splendid crowns of white hair
exploded like old ladies proud
of their Sunday do's.
While the field is flush
with the fat colors—
reds, blues, magentas crowding
the grass— the dandelions
are stripped to skulls
and shaking for a breeze
like the journey of fingers
around my thighs, the hiss of wood
before it settles into fire,
my niece's struggle
not to blink, to sleep.
For what is there left us
but an inhalation, expectation, the wind?