Between now and the last shout of college
One half-century (and counting) in the past,
I hiked up Broadway from Greenwich Village
To Columbia. A self-imposed test.
I sensed in the wind, an end. My child, grown.
My lease, ticking toward expiration date.
Perhaps my job. Thank God, a thin book, thrown
Down. Stamina, not patience, beats fate.
Long he waits. She has passed. They spat and took
Not one cheap snapshot of any milestone
I ran. “Just stay in school.” She played that rook
In a circle without end. And his bone?
Harlem. Sewer. All the same. She hurled home.
“How could you leave me with him?”
*Broadway follows an old Indian trail from the tip of Manhattan through New England into Canada.
First poetry editor of two pioneer feminist magazines, Aphra and Ms., Yvonne has received several awards including NEAs for poetry (1974, 1984) and a Leeway (2003) for fiction (as Yvonne Chism-Peace). Print publications featuring her poems include Bryant Literary Review, Pinyon, Nassau Review 2019, Bosque Press #8, Foreign Literary Journal #1, Quiet Diamonds 2018 (Orchard Street), and many others. Excerpts from her verse memoir can be found online at AMP, Tiny Seed Literary Journal, Poets Reading the News, Rigorous, Headway Quarterly, Collateral, the WAIF Project, Brain Mill Press’s Voices, Cahoodaloodaling and Edify Fiction. More excerpts are forthcoming in American Journal of Poetry, Ragweed, Colere and Home: An Anthology (Flexible Press). She was an Atrocious Poets-One City, One Poet Contest finalist.