Friday, March 18, 2011

life in me like grass on fire

This week I'm celebrating my first foray into publishing poetry for adults. I'm delighted to say that I have three poems in Life in Me Like Grass on Fire, an anthology on the theme of love treated in its broadest, richest sense by 50 members of the Maryland Writers' Association.

Laura Shovan, a fellow Maryland poet (whom I first met at a SCBWI conference), alerted me to the opportunity and has served as a tireless, intuitive editor. She even asked me to write an introduction to the section called "Love Floods the Senses," in which two of my poems are placed--a request that was both terribly flattering and terribly daunting, probably the hardest piece of writing I've done in the last few months.

Our official launch is at the annual conference of the MWA on April 2nd, but you can support "local poetry" by pre-ordering this collection here and now at 20% off. To whet your appetite, here's one of my contributions to the collection, from the section entitled "Friends and Family." (As usual, I'm unable to preserve the formatting of the poem in blogger--can anyone help me solve that problem?)


read the signs on the boxcar

and my daughter on the verge of three
sits sobbing, hands over her ears
as Mrs. Jumbo rocks her Dumbo
cradling him in the curl of her trunk
the only part of her hugeness
he can reach through the bars
this is the scary part

Baby mine, don’t you cry
she wails, “Mama I need you”

yes, you need me
to tell you why I’m full of tears
why I’m the one who needs a nap
why the clowns are bad guys
and why your days are “full of troubling”
when they used to be one long bubbling bath
of peek-a-boo
I see you

Rest your head close to my heart
to hear what I can’t tell you yet:
the flutter of faraway stork wings

~ Heidi Mordhorst
in Life in Me Like Grass on Fire, MWA Books 2011

Today's Poetry Friday Roundup is with Andromeda at a wrung sponge, where she uses a very interesting volume of poetry to connect all of us to our Japanese earthmates. May stork wings fly eastward bearing renewal.


  1. I see the answer to a question I emailed you this morning! What a gorgeous cover, and what wonders lie inside! I will have to buy it post haste.

  2. So lovely. What a beautiful moment of maternal meaning you've captured. I have to say that the ending makes it. (glad to know my three year old isn't the only one completely undone by the sad/scary parts of Disney movies)

  3. Thanks for the post, Heidi. You've been wonderful to work with.


Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!