Colleen Nehmer is an emerging poet and life-long resident of Wisconsin. She currently lives in Brookfield with her husband, three teenagers, two dogs and her collection of cookbooks, poems and umbrellas.
Small Town Diner
White splatters on
a mud-colored bench
the only sign of
a momma swallow
and her chicks
the faded Pepsi-Cola sign.
First published in the 2018 Poets' Calendar
On the edge of our bathtub, I cut
your hair, the shank of your collarbone
steady beneath my palm. Slivers fall
to the floor like so much black chaff; fine-cut
hairs cling to your neck, warmth of bread dough and
August earth, onion skin and olive oil.
Into the morning, a coffee quickening
below your collar where silvery splinters
collect like lovers in Vulcan’s metal net,
forged in a volcano where men work by
glow of fire and force, to taper and swage and
temper the white heat into serial
beauty - riveted as we are, my dear,
the smell of your scalp remains between my
fingers, like the ink of Sunday’s paper;
the revenant of my slow hands,
the narrative I leave with you.
2017 WFOP Muse Contest Prize Winner