Thursday 5 February 2015

3 Poems by Ann Howells


How desolate the bed
on just one side

On a Night I Cannot Sleep

inchworm and pendulum
my silk thread spins

peaches grow large as mangos
red as pomegranates

I am pink-fringed and luminous
on this night I cannot sleep

stars are pebbles, pebbles stars
my heart a wooden drum

midnight unravels
stars whirl like snowflakes

pink and gold ribbons
announce dawn

On Meeting an Old Friend
   Who Once Propositioned Your Wife

You’ve not seen him in twenty years,
and here he stands, smiling,

convivial as before. Your wife
accepts his handshake, but you

refuse to acknowledge him.
The old gorge rises.

That bastard! He came
when you were out-of-town

to seduce your wife—he
whom you thought a friend.

He inquires about your daughter,
laughs as he complains:

his child, a perennial student,
no classes that translate into a job.

Your wife nods with sympathy,
but you gather a cloak of resentment,

test its texture with clenched fingers.
You will never let it go.


Ann Howells’s poetry has appeared in Calyx, Crannog (Ire), Little Patuxent Review, Magma (UK), Sentence and Spillway as well as other small press and university journals. She serves on the board of Dallas Poets Community, 501-c-3 non-profit; she has edited Illya’s Honey, since 1999, recently taking it from print to digital ( Her chapbook, Black Crow in Flight, was published by Main Street Rag Publishing (2007). Another chapbook, the Rosebud Diaries, was published by Willet Press (2012). Her work has been read on NPR; she has been interviewed on Writers Around Annapolis television show; and she has been twice nominated for both a Pushcart and a Best of the Net.

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