Poetry Life & Times February 2002 Continued:

Poetry By Andrena Zawinski

See Main Page for biography.

Index of poems:

  1. Chiaroscuro for Reflected Light

  2. Cat Call

  3. First Kiss

  4. Beached Here

  5. Frogs at the End of My Pen

  • All poems have appeared, some in slightly different form, in the full collection by the author: Traveling in Reflected Light, which was released by Pig Iron Press as a Kenneth Patchen competition winner in poetry. Zawinski is Feature Editor at PoetryMagazine.com and Co-Chair of the San Francisco Bay Area Poets for Peace.

for Reflected Light
© Andrena Zawinski
(sonnet inspired by Louis MacNeice's Snow)

Sometimes the way the light slips in and spins
the chime of porcelain gulls to streak across
the drawn and muted shade, I'm taken back
beneath a tinsel rain on waves that ebb out
to the sea. Sometimes the way the light moves
through a crack inside the frame before a freeze,
all arms and legs, I forage angels in the snow
and laugh out loud at winter running wild again.

Sometimes when light ruffles edges of paper slips,
notices of half-done things, it travels dream in all
things touched and yet to be. Sometimes so dazzling
brilliant resplendent, the mere delight in light
will swell the room, and I see there is more than this
squint of dusty glass between the sun and the shade.

Publication Credit: Plainsongs 14, Petroglyph 12.

© Andrena Zawinski

Curled in the corner of your couch,
like an amber eyed calico cat
I dove, when the earth quaked, fell
into the expanse of space stretched
between your arms. You caught me,
held me there,
hair on end, claws out, screeching.
You held me to your breast, your heart
beat my own rhythm; and I,
starstruck and bewitched,
I purred in your ear.

© Andrena Zawinski


in the trees led us to the moss lined ledge. We stood
surefooted, green and sunny as dayflowers hooked
upon the Appalachian ridge. I took your hand, startled

an offguard doe to lope the glade. I took to scaling cliffs
in Portugal, stretching before a long Spanish moon, riding
the train to Istanbul, French marmalade on the tongue.


too much and all at once, I rested my lips on your hand,
held it to my cheek, your breathy whisper at my ear,
on the edge of our first kiss and my wild


Eclectic Literary Forum 2:2

(First Summer Apart)
© Andrena Zawinski

I want to tell you something
as waves spin the shelly sand,
slap and slosh against the barnacles
and green slick of moss on the jetty rail.
I want to tell you
I am glistening here in this high noon heat
where gulls careen and skim the shore for food,

I want to tell you in crone calls
darting between the spin and dive of splashy kites
that I am beached here,
peppered by your promises riddling
my head. I want to tell you in this long
day of days lost, that I am beached here
with the memory of you, your dark eyes,
the way the salty spray collected
on your cheek and shimmered.

I want to tell you something
as water retreats further from the shore,
further from all our seaside summers,
tell you there were wild ponies
on Assateaque today, dusty hair like yours
matted with barbs of myrtle, pine, and dust,
grazing in the long weeds mindless
of porpoise sounding our horizon.

I want to tell you I've stayed too long
in the sun again, that a seabreeze soothes
the heat beating down. I want to tell you
something, as the thought of you
digs in spiny sharp along
a new layer of skin.

© Andrena Zawinski

We are talking at the poets
workshop about caesura and kicking
Donald Hall's leaves, not in
October or in New Hampshire
with boots on. We're kicking leaves
in clauses with stresses, and I'm missing
something. I think of frogs
in summer at the swimming hole
in Meadville. I think fresh
dissections, wonder where eggs are
first or last, wonder if
meaning jumps or slides
through a form at the end
of my surgical pen while I'm kicking
these leaves, and I am still
missing something. I hear
frogs at the swimming hole
in Meadville and night
pregnant with sound.

Publication credit--
Pudding House No. 20, Johnstown, OH
Pudding House Publications is also the publisher of
Zawinski's Greatests Hits, 1991-2001.

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