By Carol Newman
Along I-86, tamaracks kiss the landscape with smudges of soft brown, sepia among the blue spruce evergreens and pristine snow. Hills rim the vista, carve a scalloped edge on the horizon. I drive while wavering clouds bruise the sky, bite into sunshine, and make me wish for mud, signs of spring. In the distance, piles of slag stain the snow, and a dog, chained, barks for some kind of release. Lulled, the sign for 19 surprises me. I swing sharp off toward Alfred State, 244 and the long ride through tapped maples and fields of deer, heads down, eating corn stubble. There, my friend waits for me, a quiet street, a new rug from India, all hot reds, the little animals lined up on the shelf. We talk of mothers and friends, mind/body connections, ruin and pain. Sometimes we laugh.
Carol Newman is a graduate of Pitt-Bradford and St. Bonaventure University who taught writing at Pitt-Bradford for fifteen years. She has published work in Chautauqua, Earth’s Daughters, Ebb, and the online publication Writers Workshop Review. Her poetry has also appeared in the anthologies Written on the Water: Writings about the Allegheny River and Far Out: Poems of the Sixties.