Issue Twelve - March 2008


By JoEllen Moldoff

I heard a rap at the door.

There it was, suspended
like a do-not-disturb sign. 

Mother’s old portable turned up last night.

I took it down,
opened the black case, 
raised the keys to striking position.

The red and black ribbon
was just where mother left 
her correspondence.
Mother’s old Remington returned.

Her fingerprints were still
on the keys.     My fingers were drawn
like magnets to the  A-S-D-F-H-J-K-L,
the way we were trained in Miss Moore’s typing class.

Without hesitation I typed
the best poem I’ve ever written,
the keys in striking position, tapping the paper,
with a ring at the end of each line.

The poem began with desire. 
There were ships, wind, a winter sky, a stranger.
It was tragically comic.

I ripped the paper from the platen 
and lowered the keys.

When I woke, 
there was no Remington.
No poem.

©2008 JoEllen Moldoff