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Editor's Note



Three Poems

by Peter Waldor

Hawks’ Wings

Though cool and soft
the mushroom is volcanic--
it erupts and pushes
dirt into a mound,
here hawks’ wings,
their Frankenstein
heads shining.
Two boys stoop
and cut as far down
as they can leaving
the severed stems.
They handle the mushrooms
more gently than boys
handle things, trimming
the worms which fall
in the discarded flesh,
enough to nourish
them into damsel flies.
The boys refuse to fold
their knives, walking away
under the ancient canopy
with hawks’ wings in one hand
and blades in the other.


At Trout Heaven
we give a trout
to a young man to gut,
and after slicing head,
tail and thumbing
out the organs,
he placed the heart
on the counter
for my children;
a pea-size lump
until he sprinkles
water on it
and it beats again,
on the stainless steel,
water squeezing
through the valves.
The young man
looks up to accept
my children’s laughter,
but they look as if
they see something
that should not be seen
and the young man
flicks the heart
in the trash.


The rubber band snaps
and The New York Times
unrolls like a rug,
two baby-faced soldiers
on the cover, helmets
blending into the murk
of a castle that
changed hands many times.
Gabriel (age two)
asked Who that?
That Jacob?(age ten).
No, just two men
wearing hats, I said.
Gabriel smiled and said
fighting, fighting!

Peter Waldor is the author of Door to a Noisy Room (Alice James Books, 2008), a finalist for the 2009 National Jewish Book Award. Poems from Waldor’s latest (unpublished) manuscript Hasadim have appeared or are about to appear in The American Poetry Review, the Colorado Review, the Cortland Review, the Iowa Review, Mothering Magazine and Verse Daily, among other magazines. Waldor lives in northern New Jersey where he works in the insurance business.

Copyright 2010, Peter Waldor. © This work is protected under the U.S. copyright laws. It may not be reproduced, reprinted, reused, or altered without the expressed written permission of the author.