Publication News: Curio Poetry

Nancy Flynn Apostrophe Blog Archive, Publication News, Writing

The Apostrophe Blog

Musings on Writing and Life.

Sometimes you hit the poetry acceptance jackpot. Curio Poetry took not one but three of my poems for publication in their second issue in January 2012: “Voyeur”; “Fifteen-Minute Family”; and “The Time of Small Despair.” And while these poems seem to be about different subjects, I notice in looking at them now, they all employ the third-person point of view to talk about an unnamed “she”—in the first, standing at the kitchen sink; in the second, turning on a bath tub’s faucet to run a baby’s bath; and in the third, years later, a woman studying her worn and cracking hands.

One of these poems, “Fifteen-Minute Family,” also appeared in my Finishing Line Press chapbook, The Hours of Us. And “Voyeur“ won second place in the Members Only Category of the Oregon Poetry Association’s Spring 2009 Contest.


I study her daily at dusk, one more
silhouette in a pane. Memorize
the poetry of her fingers, sudsy with soap,
the way she tidies her hair, an apostrophe
behind each ear.
Light leaves the day
and it seems forever she waits.
She knows she’s got me cornered.
I watch as she raises her hand, jerks
a chain to illuminate a bulb that hangs
bare above the kitchen sink.

Fifteen-Minute Family

With the turn of a chrome faucet,
she sees not the woman, defiant
as an afternoon’s sun casts
her silhouette over the soap dish,
but the girl, barefoot in a hippie skirt,
baby on her hip, testing the water’s
temperature with the back of her hand.
Anyone outside looking in would never
guess the tenuous pretending that day,
all three of them in the tub
the baby between them, laughing,
the mother in front cautious,
offering up the soap, a ritual
to the water until it softens, frees
the sandalwood, the washcloth
from its papier maché skin.
Who even sees the father
behind her, taking
his turn with the soap now,
polishing, determined
to make that incense
scent into a family.

The Time of Small Despair

After her hands cracked,
after the steroids
thinned her skin, made shine
her palms, their lifelines
gullied and thumbprints
evanesced, she longed
for the whorl, one more
flywheel she could seize,
velocity no
longer tapered off.
this is evening.
The signposts speak in
tongues how every blast
undoubtedly burns
down. While the makeshift
mover-shakers, such
chattering mayflies,
refuse to admit

Nancy Flynn
Follow me
Latest posts by Nancy Flynn (see all)