Since 1996 Volume XXI

Susan Terris
Susan Terris’ most recent books are Ghost of Yesterday: New & Selected Poems (Marsh Hawk Press) and Memos (Omnidawn). She is the author of six poetry books, fifteen chapbooks, and three artist's books. Journal publications include The Southern Review, Denver Quarterly, Colorado Review,Blackbird Online, PoetryMagzine.com, diode, and Ploughshares. A poem of hers from Field appeared in Pushcart Prize XXXI. A poem from Memos appears inBest American Poetry 2015She's editor of Spillway Magazine. Her next bookTake Two: Film Studies will be published by Omnidawn in 2017.www.susanterris.com

Flamingo Dream


Pink vision with knob-stick legs and bat-wing

feet: listen—the man in the moon can


see your neon flash even through

cloud. Parchment beak, feathered down,


a careful adagio of time, you tell me

a story of white lilies and blue-green


algae, of winter and summer's hard sting.

In your eyes, both the blink of dawn


and ember of last light. There poised

on one foot, a shred of desire—


windsong, furrowed water,

tropical warp, and a slow stuttered rapture.


Ice Bear Dream


What does it mean to have inky skin, guard hairs,

and glassy needles of fur that trick


the eye into seeing white, when there is none?

You are a cunning boar, sometimes crashing, yet


still graceful as you move from place to place.

Polar creature, Arctic heart, you seem to revel in


your accidental beauty. Keen of sight and smell

and touch. Patient enough to wait, then wait


longer for what you want most. Merciless with the

weak and always hunting. It’s all about the hunt.


The catch satisfies only briefly as does the ice cave

where we sometimes lie in raw embrace.



Stare. Stare until the canvas begins to tilt and shimmer,

until the moment four friends sharing a forest picnic


stir and bite into succulent peaches and plums.

Did I enter from the front or from the sunlit meadow


beyond? The meadow, I think. What happened to

the Musée d'Orsay? Is the giant clock still pulsing?


Do I have a time limit here? Am I clothed or naked?

Have I come with another cornucopia?  Filled with


grapes or cherries? It's warm, but I'm quite content.

Instead of déjeuner, I shall roll in the grass


with a bearded man. Then, even more content, I'll

lick peach juice from my lips, wipe it from my chin.

Cave of Night


Mind burnt by fever, eyes tearing, cowl of my gown

sweat-wet, I see a pulse of silvered fish steeped in


the chalky river of an underground ice-cave. No thirst

here or hunger, the only light—glint off a pale


phalanx of stalagmites. Each breath of mine, a chuff,

and around me, an ivory sheen, Above, a colony of


bats, albino wings clicking open, then closed,

as their mouse-squawks echo my own hoarse breath.


Ashy geckos ooze across stone shelves. Frosted snakes

and spiders skid. Everywhere, milky water drips.


Still, while silvered fish fin slowly by, in this cold,

I am hot. . . achingly hot.

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Mary Barnet


Grace Cavalieri

Joan Gelfand

Janet Brennan