Publication News: “A Month of Sundays”

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The Apostrophe Blog

Musings on Writing and Life.

“A Month of Sundays” is a freewheeling, leaping, highly experimental poem that glories in sonics and sound. In it, I took the English names for every month of the calendar year, fractured them into syllables then refashioned them into the language used in a dozen quatrains, beginning and ending with the month of July. I remember it was fun to write. I remember I just mostly followed the language around, letting the words themselves lead me from line to line even if, at the time, it seemed like utter nonsense was spilling out. I remember having to tinker and tweak and fiddle around a good bit to get the fractured bits and bobs to make (some kind of) syntactical sense. Looking at it now, a decade later, it reads like an encoded puzzle to me. For a poem about the months of the year, the calendar, and the passage of time in general, I liked using a familiar idiomatic phrase for its title.

“A Month of Sundays” won second place in the Experimental Category of the Oregon Poetry Association’s Fall 2014 contest. It was published in Verseweavers, the Oregon Poetry Association print anthology, in 2014 and was later included in my poetry collection, Every Door Recklessly Ajar.


These July clouds that jewel —
they lie. Augur rain, maybe
a gust. Just a tempering
of the heat,

nothing except time
unreeled, and tempting
a sober probe that hankers us
back to our days of slack,

of rain-forest spring.
When I couldn’t remember
the way a light mocks,
so strobes the gray.

Where a novice seeking
embers on the verge
would never wend the pavers,
declare dissembling

to be a blizzard of embrace.
how it overnight blurs
a jangle into the new

with its wet,
with its ossuaries of moldy
leaf, every web
lacework till trounced, never much

heated to febrile sweat,
all our brewing gone utterly
airy, and steeped. Oh but
we march, one foot in front of

the other, grow old. A few of us
thrilled to wear our denim
into this future, aping
the prill of a peony in bud,

jonquils and azaleas long shot,
the rain barrel filled by a crying sky.
May you live to see another year.
May you next time through

make a chart of the blooming —
pole bean and cosmos,
sunflowers crowning,
pollinators rocking out

a Woodstock frenzy,
stages of bee balm, rocket,
echinacea in the wings with
Bobby Darin, ole Mack the Knife

now crooning down with love,
with Junes, the moons to wrap
in cellophane more July clouds —
bejeweled, belied.

The public domain image above is a 1902 calendar from the Henry Peters Company of Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Nancy Flynn
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