Iowa Writes

Coastal Memory

Along rocky shores
where sea moss and fingers of green anemone
dance and sway;
where periwinkles cluster,
and rove in sheltered cracks;
where cleansing waves
rip mollusks from their foothold
and toss urchins ashore in twisted tangles,
a hermit crab scurries for an empty shell
while I inhale the sweet scent
of your hair on my pillow
and strain to remember
how your fingers danced like anemone
your hands like ochre sea stars
gripped the boulder with me between
while water rolled in soft waves
blending sea into sky the backdrop where
gulls rested on the roots of driftwood log.

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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Linda M. Bendorf, a Chicago area communications specialist, offers writing workshops through the University of Iowa Summer Writing Festival and as Founder and Director of Blue Sage Writing. She and her husband, Carl, met the first day of accelerated rhetoric class in the fall of 1972. Daughters Analiese and Ilse were born and raised in Iowa City, where the Bendorfs lived and worked until their recent move to Minneapolis, then Chicago. Bendorf is currently working on her memoir as a writing teacher.

This poem originally appeared in Volume 5, Number 1 of 100 Words, a journal published by the University of Iowa's International Writing Program between 1993 and 1998. Each piece in the journal had to be 100 words or fewer, and each issue had a theme. This issue's theme was "On Memory."

This page was first displayed
on March 24, 2008

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