Buttoned Up

While sipping

the last of the pinon coffee,

and wondering when

my order for more would arrive,

I recalled my grandmother

saving coffee grounds

as nourishment for her garden.


She saved



She reused

the tin fruit cake container

as a button collection canister.


“My button box,” she called it.


I see 

myself reverently empty the contents  

onto her bedroom rug, sit cross-legged,

carefully considering each button:

celluloid, mother of pearl, glass

bone, silver, ivory, brass


I wondered

what they had held together

like memories and imaginings

now fastening me securely---

past relinquished---- future forming,

buttoned up in my center,

safely sealed together  

in my soul.

—Judy Myers

Training Wheels

 Training wheels cradle my ride

breaking my fall as I pump & glide

rocking from side to side, glide,

side to side, glide.


I put these wheels back on again

seeing how I was about to spin

out into fantasy land where I’d

fallen before and scraped my

shin, red ripped my skin, not

quite getting the art in my story,

falling apart. 

Just when I thought this gradient

was stable and I wise, more than

able, then gears, cogs and bolts

went into a wobble. It was only

an illusion I’d cobbled from my

imagination, “if only” enabled.

Old view looking for new, expanding

horizon, while looking inward, inward,

inward, too. Perfect timing, with Covid

and all, to see what I can get to stick

to my future self wall. Not too late to learn

a new language … “Brute, et tu?”

—Martha Koock Ward


To "Ran" by Kim Mosley

It is not what we see
in the bright shapes of the day--
a crinkled gold of sunshine
on flowers and steps,
a pond we walk by catching the sky
a watered lawn the right green.

These are there, of course,
and true in their way,
as is the gray of concrete,
rainy morning duty
where we rise with not enough sleep
and drink our coffee, shake our arms,
our shoulders, to rouse ourselves.
Look at the sunshine creeping
under the blinds, we say,
You can do this—get out there!

But behind all that—the sun catching
rainbow on the drops from the sprinkler,
the paper we draw from our briefcases—
lies an ocean that sun and paper
float in, a dark they rise out of, like islands.

An antelope runs the plain.
It leaps the absence,
the gap,
the lightless fjords between the known.
Its body—not-body—is a black possibility,
a night that turns into the face of day

that turns into so many things—faces
and oranges and isthmuses,
crowded onto our mainland of the real.

Beyond it float fragments and wires
of the ungraspable,

an island of fog
where the unnamed and the unnameable
rub against each other in the mist

and the broad water beyond it all,
the deep below things and their names,
the black of everythingalltogether
not yet born
ready to rise.

Sarah Webb, 11/16/20