A Barred Owl

by Laura Parker Roerden Several nights this week I have lain in bed listening to the call and response of three barred owls outlining each cardinal direction—save for the south— which is oddly missing in the chorus, as if the baritones had boarded a bus for Times Square for some dancing and Christmas lights, while […]

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The Ways of Water

by Laura Parker Roerden As a child, we had a hand pump over an artesian well by a white, double-decker chicken barn. It was the only water for hundreds of birds growing on that land. The pump required several hard thrusts of the handle to raise the water like spirit, to the surface. Then each […]

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Cold Poem

by Laura Parker Roerden When life crowds you with the call of too many mean words, words that line the very highway you are walking, words that tumble along ghost town prairies like dangerous tumbleweeds gathering seeds, spreading like wildfire and threatening to crowd out truth, try to find the center of the pendulum, though […]

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A Coming Hurricane

by Laura Parker Roerden I read today that a flock of seagulls was once trapped in the eye of a hurricane. The birds had sought refuge in the false calm of fair skies, but didn’t realize they now flew through a tunnel of destruction, all ways out blocked by certain devastation. Birds that sense plummeting […]

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A Small Poem

by Laura Parker Roerden Small things sometimes call us home, like the two birds I saw circling the hay field this morning on my way back from farm chores. Their shrill vibrating whistle, a half warning, half invitation stunned me awake from a deep dream—even though I should have been sufficiently awake from an hour […]

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The Garden Spider

by Laura Parker Roerden Every single evening in her short life the garden spider spins a web of concentric circles. Each anchored to five or so holdfasts, simple spokes on a wheel, against which everything hinges. Around and around she goes, adding to her work, bridging the distance from one holdfast to another, length by […]

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