Category Archives: National Poetry Month

Flowering Trees


For National Poetry Month, a poem of mine, which I keep thinking of as all the trees become full with blossoms. It first appeared in Prairie Schooner and then in my book, Morph and Bloom.

Flowering Trees

The magnolias bloomed for a week,
then shed their petals on the lawn.
Two weeks for the redbuds,
then their feisty pinks
on sidewalks and cars.
My boy just learned the names
of these beauties and now they’re gone.
Soon he’ll venture into dirt,
squashing dandelions in his sweaty palms.
Then summer will roar into the yard,
turning the dandelions to dust.
And this morning, driving home
from the park, I saw my childhood
fly out the window: my father gripping
the steering wheel, his fingers
tapping to the music. I lost
the season, the color of his shirt,
the timbre of his voice.
All that remained
was a terrible thumping
in my throat, his love swelling,
then spinning from me.
Sometimes I search for my father
in my boy’s eyes. And when I find him,
I turn away, I scatter, I disperse.


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A Giveaway for National Poetry Month


It’s National Poetry Month, and I’m participating in the BIG POETRY GIVEAWAY.

I am giving away TWO books of poems!

First, I’m giving away my book, Morph and Bloom.

cover art

It’s my second book of poems. I think of it as a love letter to my first son. The poems are of the early days of motherhood, that transformation that happens for the mother (and child). Here’s a review by Grace Cavalieri for the Washington Independent Review of Books, which sums it up well:

“From the wish for a child, through the profound generation of new life, the production—how it occurs—this is a heroically personal collection. To profess what we want most and fear most is the greatest courage. Our poet, from the first poem, writes as if she’s running from the tsunami of loss, always with us as we birth a child, for the only way a child can go, is away. Loss occupies these poems and brings with it the intuition that’s the heart of poetry. She writes of it whether at a playground, or an uncle’s funeral, the child within, or the child weaned. The book embodies an emotional life of Motherhood, each piece protean to the larger question: How do we bring in temporal love, and how well do we reflect on it.”

Second, I’m giving away a copy of Sarah Vap’s Faulkner’s Rosary.


Sarah is one of my favorite contemporary poets (and she was kind enough to write a blurb for my book!). Faulkner’s Rosary is book-length sequence of pregnancy (and loss) poems. It is sensual, intimate, strange, and deeply moving. I am so happy to share it. Here’s a review, by Cynthia Hogue:

“Sarah’s Vap’s exquisite third collection, Faulkner’s Rosary, is a poetic “Stabat Mater,” the expectant mother both altered (altared) and precisely meditative. Faulkner’s Rosary transmutes the body’s magical chemistry into poetic alchemy with delicate, marvelous wisdom. I savored the intimacy of this book, its courage to express the particular and universal of becoming a parent, that larger knowledge of love’s generosity. I am in awe of the rare beauty of these poems.”

If you would like to enter to win these two books, leave a comment here, or on my Facebook page (I will be posting a few times about the Giveaway there, and will count all comments left on a post about it). Winner will be randomly selected and announced May 1st. Please check back here if you haven’t heard from me! If the winner doesn’t come forward in a week, I will have to pick another winner. Thanks! And happy National Poetry Month!


If you’d like to do a giveaway of your book, or enter to win other books, please visit Kelli Russell Agodon’s official giveaway page! And check out her work. She is a marvelous, beautiful poet.



The winner (randomly selected using is Marianne Mersereau,. Marianne, I sent you an email. Let me know if you don’t get it!


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