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Thank you for supporting me in this unique challenge of writing 30 poems in 30 days to raise funds for the nonprofit Tupelo Press. To make a tax-deductible donation to Tupelo Press, please click here.  Or if you’d prefer to support the literary press by subscribing to one of their fine publications, please click here.  In the meantime, my fellow poets and I have the 12 poems so far at the Tupelo Press 30/30 blog page. 

Rose-hip Jelly

My grandmother littered the house
With pastel post-it notes; I read her
Thorny handwriting, broken twigs
Her unfinished thoughts, seed-casings
Reminders, bequeaths, old recipes.

We opened the windows & doors
To let the trapped sea air out
When the river got winded, because
The Big House needed to breathe.

Her notes blew in the breeze,
Scattered, melting into damp soil
Wilted petals from the roses
Thrived in the courtyard
Of my family’s two houses.

My father tended to those bushes
Like Hawthorne’s Rappaccini,
He harvested their pungent oils,
Safely, wearing work gloves,
The pantry became a perfumery
While Dad made rose hip jam.

I pranced between the shrubs
We were sisters, like Beatrice
And her poisonous plants.

I collected the heart-shaped
Droplets, molded perfectly
Fitting my fingertips, a fresh
Pair of thumbprints. If I spun

Around fast enough, my pretend
Petalled fingerprints transposed,
Exposing a wishful identity
The wide rosehips, silky blooms
I hadn’t grown into yet, wild

And slowly solidifying, sun
Speckled inside a fly-eyed
Crystal set on the window sill
Bubbles of black currants
Like tempted insects sealed
In magenta jars of jelly.

~ Leah C. Stetson  TP Subscribe

Leah

Poet. Artist. Ecoheroine. Human ecologist. Spiritual mermaid and Mystic. I write about literary ecology, wetlands, water, Romantic ecology, and quirky adventures with my dog.

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Laura M Kaminski's poetry practice and links

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Catherine Evans Latta

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