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Editor's Note


SNR's Writers


Chimpanzee Tea Party, London Zoo 1926

For their daily treat, the chimps are costumed fine
in romper suits and robes and dandy hats.
They’re calm, obedient, polite, prepared to dine
on cakes and cream and tea brewed in a pot.

The zoo crowd smiles at tidy, well-trimmed hair,
at manners, chatter, quaint but toothy grins.
They’re just like us!” (more so, were they fair),
but could they . . . a teacup

a cake hurled ‘cross the cage,
a pot dropped,
the diners, knuckles
on the table,
hats, shrieking
chimpanzee –
differences from us
yet more amusing . . .
(and much more, in the long run,

Gallows Hill, Salem

Today it’s stubble pine,
iced grass whisking
circles in snow drifts,
stag-horn sumac’s
red against white.

A lone redtail rises
against the darkening sun,
A raspy crow tries to call,
and an early robin clings
to a bare branch, does not . . .
should not . . . sing.

I find none of the hangings’ horror,
while at my feet, snow smooths rough
granite folded like the scroll
that named them witches, chose
this as the place to damn them.

Shall We Dance This Blizzard?

It’s barefoot Yul bowing at the door,
gilded, royal, arms outstretched, then
we two swirling, whirling new

snow across the hill, up the slope, down
the drive, through drifted yards, my silk white
gown, petticoats rippling, wind trumpeting

one, two, three, and . . . tall firs iced into
glittering columns . . . one, two, three, and . . .
obedient maples swaying too in time,

and icicle fingers snapping the beat from
the eaves as I spin to home, where I kiss
his bald head and one two three and . . .

Copyright 2009, Ann Taylor. © 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.

Ann Taylor is a professor of English at Salem State College in Salem, MA. She has published academic articles, a collection of personal essays called, Watching Birds: Reflections on the Wing, and poems in such places as Arion, Appalachia, Classical and Modern Literature, and the Dalhousie Review. She lives in Woburn, MA, with her husband, Francis Blessington.