I Write for Life


Where’s that smell of ozone coming from?  lightning?

Creating new life in Frankenstein’s lab.

Now I know what it feels  to be like God.”


To make something means to be loving it.

But not all who make, love. They just cry out,

It’s alive!” and fail to name the monster.


To erase the horror of being forgotten,

I write. What  dead, covered with unmown grass,

will materialize in my wanderings?


Like my muse Rosalía De Castro,

“I see my path, but don’t know where it leads.

Not knowing where I’m going inspires me.”


To find my Pennsylvania kin, I  follow a smell—

stale potato chips, tobacco reeking

in the wing-backed chair by the narrow gauge tracks.


Agnes never would permit such a mess.

At fourteen, she sailed from Poland, alone like that.

Jacob Kot made her smile with his fiddle.


He was her second husband, post-Spanish Flu,

A mason squirmed out of the mines’ tentacles.

And Agnes, mother of eight, grew tired.


Forever cleaning her home, she fell asleep

in that chair. Forever. I feel them now,

my ancestors, dancing polkas in my veins.

Jacob, Victoria, and Agnes


Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley.

Rosalia de Castro. Galician poet of the 19th century.

Alone Like That” feat. Parmalee

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