Marie Kane

2006 Poet Laureate

Marie Kane’s poetry has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and has appeared in the Bellevue Literary Review, U.S. 1 Worksheets, Wordgathering, The Schuylkill Valley Journal, Naugatuck River Review, Small Print Magazine, Adanna Journal, and others. She taught English for twenty-eight years in the Central Bucks School District, winning a gold award for teaching high school poets from The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. Her poetry has won prizes from the Poetry Society of New Hampshire, Inglis House, and the Robert Frasier.  Her work has been anthologized in Poems for the Writing: Prompts for Poets, edited by Valerie Fox and former Bucks County Poet Laureate, Lynn Levin, and in The Liberal Media Made Me Do It, poetic responses to NPR and PBS stories, edited by Robbie Nester, et al. Kane is the final juror in the national Sarah Mook poetry contest and an editor for Poetry WITS. Her chapbook, Survivors in the Garden (Big Table Publishing), was released in 2012, and largely concerns her life with Multiple Sclerosis.  She is the Poetry Editor for Pentimento Magazine andlives in Yardley, PA, with her husband, Stephen Millner, and their rescue cat, Casey Jones.

I Can Say Now That Things Are Not What They Seem
after “Velocity Meadows” by Mark Strand

Standing on the porch and hearing your shovel
move early snow to the rocky side of the driveway, 
I feel December’s cold flicker like a tossed mane. 
Moon’s light reveals our slanted snowfield,
while the drawn-out call of a train drifts
over early winter. Wind spins a frieze
of clouds that briefly close the light.

You interrupt your labor to watch me
test my quad cane on the snowy step. 
Our neighbor’s muted lamppost tempts
me across driveway’s icy chasm. 
I think of all that I have lost.
What comfort is there when life puckers
its lips as if to kiss, then steals away, taunting? 
I step off the porch into snow’s white lines
that sift, whisper, revise the world. 
An owl cries from snow-tinged trees
out back.  Slim light from stars gathers
at the gray fence line. 

Your windswept warnings. 
My precarious footfalls on fresh snow.


(Published in Small Print Magazine, Summer/Fall, 2014)