Season of Change

By Kirsten P. Haas   09/14/2015

This piece was the second one I wrote in the Wyomissing Poetry Practicum in fall 2015.  When I shared it with the group, I could not read it all the way through and Mary (whom I had just met that day), a fellow poet, put her arm around me, gently took the paper out of my hand and finished reading it to the group.  Since that day, I have shared this piece at a few readings and it never gets easier.  I share it today on the occasion of my Mom’s birthday.

Winter’s cold malingered into March.

My runner’s snot froze in cheap knit gloves.


I spent a long weekend with friends celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.

We paused to run a half-marathon on Sunday and resumed the festivities.

We drove home.


Spring arrived with the afternoon.

The telephone rang and work paused for a plane ride home.


April exploded, spreading pollen across the South.

Bethany and I fetched food, drink and meds.

We napped with Mom,

reminisced with Mom,

overwhelmed the kitchen with Easter baking and cheered for Bubba                                     Watson to win the Masters.


May bloomed.

Mom called me on her way into surgery.

She said I’m scared, Kiki.

I assured her You will be fine.

I love you and I will talk to you when you wake up.


Seven days passed.

Wednesday morning arrived and the telephone rang.

Dad said it’s time to come home and say goodbye.

I shut down my computer and walked out of the office.

Drove home.

Called my husband,

called my sister,

called the airline.


24-hours sped by.

I sat in a chair


I watched Mom’s weakening heartbeat

recede into


Primary Day

Remnant of Monday’s moon
hangs in mid-sky
just over the Japanese maple
on the corner of the bank drive-thru window.
The clean freshness of just-cut grass
peppers the morning mugginess.

Cars roll by
a succession of wheels
on the way to

I watch the morning world from
the brown metal chair
in the corner.

A respite from my brisk walk
down the hill
to the synagogue
to cast my vote.

I wonder
how my actions might impact
this microcosm
this morning world
on the corner.

Is it as simple as ordering
a cup
of coffee?

After Art Class

She shuffles along
the mud-streaked wood floor
punctuate the forward push
of each foot.


She cautiously lowers herself onto the bench.

against the wall

she patiently waits
amid the whirlwind of art students coming and going.

She catches her breath.

A smile slowly spreads
as she admires the field of golden sunflowers
captured forever on painted canvas

by her own

Why I Write Poetry

Poetry is Freedom

Freedom from         structure

Freedom from                     form

Poetry allows for expression of my deepest fears

my darkest thoughts

my silliest whims

and my precious clichés


Poetry lets me stare at the clouds






Poetry lets me

observe the commonplace


describe it as









Written freely


Read with bravado


Consumed by no one