Woman on Love, by Karla Merrifield

Karla Merrifield

She appropriated the edges of love.

Later, she annotated volumes of it.

In her love stories? Poets.

She was always taking new names.

I was moose; I was armadillo.

Time— and love!— made her giddy.

She wore totem turtles.

She conversed with green tree spirits.

Cosmically, she found home: the Universe.

She embodied the metaphor of love.

She placed lichen in the foreground.

She came so close.

with a line from Michael G. Smith

Author’s Comment: “Women on Love” is from a growing collection of poems that honor poet and friend Michael G. Smith, whom I think of as the next Arthur Sze. In each “Micheal poem,” I tweeze a line from his first book, Almanac, and leap from his words into a new realm, a new poem. Such appropriation has proven successful for me. The Etowah River Psalms, (FootHills Publishing, 2009) is comprised of poems similarly inspired; line after line I extracted from Georgia poet Beau Cutts’s master poem, “The Etowah,” spawned an entire book of poems! Thus I give gushing thanks to my muses.

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