Kerry Trautman

Kerry Trautman

Kerry Trautman

Shorts *
The weak spring sun manages
to warm the street-level, downtown
air to something like comfort,
coaxing out the teen girls,
to the shopfront sidewalks,
eager in their shorty-shorts and
thick pale winter thighs,
chilled but thrilled to stretch and strut
with platform sandals popping up
their calves, striding
out toward what’s ahead.
One girl, in a red t-shirt,
suddenly jumps,
with a leaden punch of dread—
perhaps it was
her mind’s trick of a shadow of a ghost
in noonlight’s under-awning shade,
but, looking again,
she had seen merely a shop-owner’s
quavering pot of stargazer lilies.
She shakes it off, re-struts
the youthful length of her legs,
heading nowhere
quickly as she can.
If only the sunbeams could heat her
and the others always.
If only lilies could be, for them,
the worst of their fears.
 

To the Poets
Like Mary Oliver
wandering her woods
.          gathering mushrooms
.          fish and berries
..                   like a black bear
.          gathering language
.          in which to house herself—
.                    sumac walls and
.                    mayapple carpet,

I forage
for what I need
.          among you,
stanzas of sustenance
swelled with
.          the juice of what it means
.                    to have been living.
 

 

Toast & Coffee

 1.
The boy licked butter from
his toast—half burnt—
and he nibbled
the best of it, because
she had put down
her mug and newspaper
to make it
and because
the butter and knife,
and plate were already
waiting on the counter
when he
shrugged downstairs.
 

2.
The air smells like toast—
like a Thursday morning
before school
with coffee brewing,
and though he didn’t
drink coffee yet,
its smell and the toast
at resilient dawn
were the walls themselves,
and he wanted for her
an endless pot.
 

3.
He made toast
for his mother
when she was too sick
for much else
and taught himself
the important lesson
of how
to brew coffee.
 
*first appeared in To Have Hoped (Finishing Line Press, 2015)

 


 

Kerry Trautman

Twitter: @ohiokerry         Website: Nope          Video       Lost Long Gone Forgotten Records

Bio: Ohio born and raised, Kerry is a founding member of Toledo, Ohio’s Almeda St. Poets, and the Toledo Poetry Museum.  She is often seen at local poetry readings and events such as Artomatic 419, 100-Thousand Poets for Change, Back to Jack, and the Columbus Arts Festival. Kerry is a graduate of the University of Toledo Honors College, and is a member of the Abracadabra Studio of Poetics.  Her poetry and short fiction have appeared in various journals, including Midwestern Gothic, Alimentum, The American Journal of Nursing, The Toledo Review, The Fourth River, and Third Wednesday; as well as in anthologies such as, Tuesday Night at Sam and Andy’s Uptown Café (Westron Press, 2001), Mourning Sickness (Omniarts, 2008), Roll (Telling Our Stories Press, 2012), and Journey to Crone (Chuffed Buff Books, 2013).  Her chapbook, Things That Come in Boxes, was published by King Craft Press in 2012.  Her second chapbook, To Have Hoped, is available at http://www.finishinglinepress.com .  *photo by Adrian Lime