Erica Goss will present her poetry as part of the Petaluma Poetry Walk at the Aqus Café, Foundry Wharf, 189 H Street, Petaluma, on Sunday, September 20, 2016, 6:00 to 8:00 pm, on a program with J. R. Brady, Karen Melander Magoon, Leah Lubin and Susan Weinstein.
Erica Goss served as Poet Laureate of Los Gatos, CA, from 2013-2016. In 2011, she won the Many Mountains Moving Poetry Contest, and was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2010 and 2013. She is co-founder of Media Poetry Studio, a poetry-and-film camp for teenage girls. She is the author of Wild Place (Finishing Line Press 2012) and Vibrant Words: Ideas and Inspirations for Poets (PushPen Press 2014). Her poems, articles and reviews have appeared and are forthcoming in many journals, including Contrary, West Trestle Review, Tinderbox, The Tishman Review, Connotation Press, Hotel Amerika, Pearl, Passager, Main Street Rag, Rattle, Eclectica, Blood Lotus, Wild Violet, The Bohemian, Café Review, Zoland Poetry, Comstock Review, Lake Effect, and Perigee.
Love Poem with Broken Things
By Erica Goss
I like to think of him as a small boy, disassembling
the old phonograph his father gave him.
When we moved in together,
he filled our garage with red metal
toolboxes, boxes with drawers
inside of drawers, stuffed with
wrenches of every conceivable size,
drill bits, washers, screws, and nails.
It seemed as if he knew our life ahead
contained a lot of broken things,
and he, for one, was prepared. Back then,
his boxes of tools annoyed me, tripped me,
forced me to park in the driveway.
But now, when I think our life cannot accept
another broken, hopeless thing,
I know that somewhere in the garage
he has a tool that will mend it, tighten it,
wire it or stabilize it, and if he doesn’t,
we’ve learned to let it go with a shrug,
like when he finally admitted he couldn’t
put the phonograph back together, and solemnly
handed the screwdriver back to his father.
First appeared in Eclectica, 2016
by Erica Goss
I didn’t ask why my country was
moonstruck, deep in the month of July
when I was nine years old. I didn’t
care about the stiff unflapping flag
and even less about steps, leaps or
mankind. I was not impressed with the
lunar module and its spider legs,
or the black sky, or a man’s footprint.
I didn’t know the US flag, fixed
upright in the bone-dry dust, was a
challenge to the world: beat this. I had
no idea who the Soviets
were. None of it mattered in that hot
July, for I received a brother,
knowledge that filled me with lovely pain
and made me dizzy, like when I caught
my first glimpse of a photo of Earth,
its blue surface mottled with storms and
continents, my head a whirlwind of
ragged energy, spinning, spinning,
breathless, euphoric, alive. Beat that.
First appeared in Atticus Review, 2013