M.J. Iuppa

Up in Arms
Marching hell bent out of the Viking Apartments, she turns onto the soft
shoulder of the road, all dressed in black, except for her white sneakers,
stamping the ground like exclamation points. She’s deep in conversation;
her gloved hand repeatedly swipes the air left, while her other arm swings
stiffly, back and forth, like a metronome. A cloud of hot breath escapes
her lips and trails behind her. I think gun smoke. I think trouble. I think
she can’t see what is in front of her. She stops abruptly; swaying a bit:
one, two, three; one, two—she spins around.

Yew (You)
Sun up, snow down, scraggly yew in the garden, full of snow.
You take a picture with your new phone’s camera, filling up
the frame with this year’s yew. Who cares?  Not you.  Small
clump of snow in its center. It looks pathetic, like you, still
in yesterday’s sweatpants and tie-dyed, long-sleeved tee shirt.
You take five more shots every fifteen minutes. Time-lapsed.
Nothing else to do. You sigh as you scroll through the images
of the same yew, over and over. The clump of snow shrinks
in a touch. Not much of a change, but enough to be subtle.

M.J. Iuppa’s fourth poetry collection is This Thirst (Kelsay Books, 2017). For the past 
32 years, she has lived on a small farm near the shores of Lake Ontario. Check out her
blog: mjiuppa.blogspot.com for her musings on writing, sustainability & life’s stew.
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