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Karen George

Karen George is author of three poetry collections from Dos Madres Press: Swim Your Way Back (2014), A Map and One Year (2018), and Where Wind Tastes Like Pears (2021). She won Slippery Elm’s 2022 Poetry Contest, and her short story collection, How We Fracture, which won the Rosemary Daniell Fiction Prize, is forthcoming from Minerva Rising Press in Spring 2023. Her work appears in Adirondack Review, Atticus Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review, Indianapolis Review, and Poet Lore. Her website is:

Playing For the Lost

A tall sinuous woman leans against a midnight-blue piano,
plays a violin tucked between chin and shoulder.

Lace sashays at her wrists and deep V-neck teal dress. Dark hair,
dramatic brows, eyes closed, half her face shadowed blue.

O, her body, the body of the piano with its blocky legs,
the hourglass violin, the wide-hipped vase and its mirror image

cast on the piano lid whelmed with late afternoon sun
and the ecstasy of Paganini’s Caprice #5.

Voluptuous, veiled blue notes rise, fall, catch, amass
in the indigo vase, its glass pulsing with the plucked strings.

She pours herself out, tilts, elongates, creates space to cradle
joy, grief, wonder inextricably spliced. The air ambers, hums.

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