Wednesday, June 24, 2020

New Poetry by Peggy Turnbull

When Mountains Shimmer

Each summer I visit the ridge to see
our abandoned mountain home, its matted grass,
the white pines wrapped in poison ivy. 

The field below glows with hay bales. 
No trace remains of the fire that blistered our idyll.
Our daughter married a local boy.

Her father still won’t speak to her. “Because
no one else wore a suit to her wedding.”
On an August day so hot the cake melted,

I watched him sweat in a three-piece suit. 
Shiny dress shoes made him slip on the steep lawn,
his composure ruffled by our daughter’s friends:

hippy homesteaders. The women wore 
broomstick skirts, publicly nursed their newborns. 
He never returned to our split rail fence. 

I think mountain’s green witness pierces him. 
On the Blue Ridge, memories hang on tree branches, 
flap like ghosts. Don’t harden yourself,

I try to tell him, but I am just a glimmer 
in the evening mist.

- © Peggy Turnbull 2020

Peggy Turnbull is a poet and neophyte wildflower enthusiast who now lives in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, USA, which is on the Lake Michigan shore. Peggy worked and lived in southern West Virginia for 26 years until she moved back to her birthplace. Her poems have recently been published in Poetry Super Highway, Rats Ass Review, and Bramble.  Her micro chapbook, Rocking Chair Abstract, is available from the Origami Poem Project. You can find out more about her at 

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