October 4, 2016

Three Poems by Denise C. Buschmann: "Charlie Brings Nora to Visit, August 7, 2015," "Reality Jolt," and "Worth by Different Standards"

Denise C. Buschmann lives in Carmel, Indiana and is a freelance editor and proofreader. A former teacher, she holds master’s degrees in mild interventions and reading from The University of Indianapolis. She grew up in a small town in North Carolina and sometimes lay awake listening to transfer trucks whizz by her grandmother’s house, when visiting overnight, thinking how wonderful it would be to travel to some of their destinations. Having lived in several states, Denise settled down in Indiana 23 years ago. Denise’s poetry received honorable mention in the Contemporary American Poetry Prizes contest in 2014 (Chicago) and has been published, thus far, this year in Leaveners Poets’ Corner (UK), The Great American Wise Ass Poetry Anthology, Lamar University (TX), Seeing Beyond the Surface (NJ), Shout it Out! (UK), and Revival: Self Discovery Magazine (FL).

Charlie Brings Nora to Visit, August 7, 2015

The conversation is light.
Food goes down easy.

Love is in the house.
Both mini-schnauzers sense the mood.

They go to you after a brief
yipping-growling-sniffing session,

placing paws on knees, tails wagging.
You are loved. You are welcome.

Your friend becomes my friend.
We trade emails, connect on facebook, narrate short photo shows.

Life is smooth seas and good vibes tonight.
We sip Josh Cellar’s mellow merlot,

nibble Swedish-style Boar’s Head Fontina
and Sartori’s Montamoré—like a new romance,

I am in love with this sweet and fruity
cheese with a playful bite.

“Ancient Aliens” plays in the background, low.
We discover we hold the same ET and karma views.

You announce your son was accepted at IU.
Celebrations abound—you’re moving back home, too!

Nora swoons in the backyard over my pink and red roses, grape vincas, muted
hydrangea blooms, and variegated foliage that appears each year.

Back inside, you wash, I dry. Hugs all around.
You fly to your Florida home soon; Nora to Venezuela.

I watch you and my new friend with gratitude, love,
as you exit the backdoor and head out the gate.

Reality Jolt

Ragtop down, wind blowing through our hair, we were girlfriends catching up
after 15 years. The steep mountainous curve loomed ahead—scarcely
registered—until, like a robot programmed for destruction,
she drove us STRAIGHT. Off a cliff.

Surely there's an embankment, a rail . . .

No words adequately describe the horror

of the next instant. The car vanished.
We found ourselves suspended
in midair with chubby
Popeye-like arms,
hovering in a huddle hug

over the hateful lushness
of many meadows
a mammoth valley
miles beneath us.

So, this is it?
. . . my final

Ice-frozen inside the terror,
I spotted

my lingerie chest!

Grappling with reality,
it occurred to me . . .
I’d woken up !

Worth by Different Standards

The actress wore
her perky,
finely chiseled nose,
as an accessory—
in her profession
a necessity.

But, what if
we were who we are
without pretentions
without fear
of rejection by peers
clanging in our ears?

Rather, what if
we enlarged hearts
not breasts
and painted others’
praises instead of nails
weighing accomplishments
on altruistic scales?

What if we dared?

~Denise C. Buschmann

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