• Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


IN our eyrie, Ariel

You are the only other American:

We have flown home, Montana woman.

The feeling in our bones

Still of having

Taken leave.

Dark feathers:

Different speech

Like on an organ: you open the pipe & let the air in. In our sanctuary: little but mighty:

It’s like having a new organist in our temple:

I seek a flashback finale: all stops pulled out, countrywoman.

  • Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


MAPS ON GLOSSY of above Paris

On my bed

It is the third anniversary of Pity.

Serious about leaving multiplication & division.


I sit beside a blue folkloric cross

That could be from Mother Theresa:

Like compassion

Not pity after your first communion:

O my Lord, no

social butterfly after first communion:

These nun like & salty O immunity workers keep me alive: Above Paris on my bed.

And your love. July & another glossy map pulled down, another anniversary of MERCY.

  • Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


YOU ARE a steady, incandescent presence in the home

Changing linen

Doing tons

Of wash.

On hot days

You pour a glass of ice.

Doctor-prescribed outings?

They are at the back of the film

Which ended long ago.

Long ago comes close

The projector bulb off, it is you: the steady

ncandescent presence in our home.

  • Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


EARNEST, tense, introverted

Another emerges on the film

Grainy: but my music be the gladness of the world still burs at core like

Before the illness savaged me.

When we met, you fit the New England of my imagination.

One room schoolhouse, general store. Nothing drastic happened immediately.

Now what is cozy

No more


Our home bisected by

circles; okra are hexagons too; struggle to cook Boston beans,

come in the door, wheel across carpeted flaming pain up hardwood floor.

  • Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


DEAR ARIEL, the scent of longing

Don’t lay it on my soul:

burnout is burnout.

Dear love of my LIFE, put this down to age:

While another amazing poem is in the hopper

I glossed over not getting out because of the pain.

Much is glossy: much fires capes abrading nightfall’s

Pearl, violet

The small lavender sachet under your pillow for good sleep.

The cathedral back chair

Perfect for prayer but, Ariel, the scent of longing, the falling from, a narrative child,

laid on my soul the blessing blown by battle fatigue, blown back in by lungs.

  • Lynn Strongin
  • from In Our Eyrie (Ariel)


THE WORDS for things are leaving

Like birds into trees.

You from me

Lungs ache,

Gorge rises.

Water Street sees the Brooklyn Bridge from New York City.

I crumple the love note.

Nightfall tapestry

Hold like the burnt fountain water left

Dry to the lips,

While words roost pearl in umber cover; eyrie, sanctity.