"Our Town" from All Kinds of Truth

Out of nowhere, a place races
into our sky, then thrusts
itself into the sonic boom.
We stop garage saling long
enough to look up, to blink at the sun.
Most of us have inactive frequent flyer accounts.
We are the people who live inside square
clean houses, inside a steady old town
at the matrix of dry fields of alfalfa.
Our high school marching band practices
in our streets every morning: their synchrony flaps
with our J.C. Penney underwear on the clotheslines.
Robins pull up worms and fly
off, while our children keep step.
We put tables in our driveways and arrange
faded dishes, sunlamps our husbands called mistakes,
and clothing our kids grew away from years ago.
Our price tags are high.
When I was in band, I was anxious
about marching too slowly. It was hard
to slow down while watching
airplanes measure the sky. Now, I am selling
a tired toaster that warms bread fine if
you have time to kill. But I still know
how it feels to look up and wonder
why infinity is shown to us when we can
not bear it, how the universe can keep its
rhythm, when we have long ago
been lulled into remaining still.


About her life and work, Catherine writes, "Currently, I am managing editor at Magna Publications in Madison, Wisconsin.  I have an MA in English Creative Writing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and I have published hundreds of articles in many publications. In addition, one of my poems was published in Luther College's New Oneota Review (now known as The Oneota Review).

"I participated in the Iowa summer Writing Festival earlier this month.  I had the pleasure of taking a course on Powerful Plots with Venise Berry.

"This poem is from my novel All Kinds of Truth, in which the protagonist shares her poetry with the people who are taking a class she is teaching at a community college."

Magna Publications site

This page was first displayed
on October 03, 2008

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