Issue > Poetry
Mary Buchinger

Mary Buchinger

Mary Buchinger's poems have appeared in AGNI, Diagram, Nimrod, Pank, Slice Magazine,The Massachusetts Review, Versal and other journals; she featured at the Library of Congress and received New England Poetry Club's Varoujan and Houghton Awards; her collection, Roomful of Sparrows, was a New Women's Voices semi-finalist. She is Associate Professor of English and Communication Studies at MCPHS University, Boston, 


             In the earliest paintings, the Madonna
is stiff in her perfection, the Baby, wooden,
neither of them soft, yielding; they are pink
or yellow, simple in contour. Clutched
in the infant's fist, a goldfinch that will peck
at agony's thorns, or an apple—the fruit
that brought Him here. As if unaware
of each other, They arrest and hold
your eye.

             That Mother, mysterious, iconic,
will be hauled down to earth, achieve perspective,
tenderness, shadow as She enters realism, then
will disappear for some twenty years of His life.
As for Jesus, he will grow too large for her lap,
discover honey, wine, perfume; he will fish,
heal, preach, and finally be torn, pierced,
stinking of vinegar and blood, before
She will get to cradle Him again, both,
by then, gone supple with suffering.

Dead Seal At State Beach

Damp, ruffled patch, long white bones
in rib-rows

a hollow away, one cupping white blade
all the rest, dark, wet

maggots, cool and moving as the iris of an eye
seething their own sea

some undulating hand lifts
the mantle of them

they teem
incidental syncopation

tiniest movement, concert
of mouths

like peppery waves
chisel rock into this swallowing sand

I kneel inside
the ticking orbit, spindle of ends


Mark McKain

Mark McKain
To His Mother


Sara Burnett

Sara Burnett
Field, A Body


Sharon Mast

Sharon Mast
Parakeet Sister