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Sharon Fagan McDermott: The Book of Lesser Angers

presses each broken thing

like an autumn leaf

between pages where I watch

the pace of disintegration,

lacy residue.


Rain writes within it

a sloppy welter—the

neighbor shaking her hose

in your face, swearing;

your car door scraped

and crumpled against

a concrete pillar; the dishwasher’s

breakdown, gushing water

all over your kitchen floor

just when you start

the cancer treatment;


I walk the dog in circles

round and round the

graveyard. He’s the best

company these days,

a wayfaring beast off-leash,

making me laugh, galloping

like a clumsy pony.


I count the kindnesses

that start to outweigh the angers:

a bowl of mango sorbet

a friend scoops out for me.

A thick burst of sunflowers—

their bold, young lion faces.

The printmaker today, strumming

his ukulele in the rained out

Fair in the Park, yodeling songs

just for my friend and me.


And anyway, I’ve not much fight left

right now, between the needles,

biopsies, the surgery. Just want a soft

place with pillows on it. And then: you call,

saying, you’ve been on my mind all week,

I’m sending love—beautiful

as red dahlias lolling toward me

on their sturdy, singular stems.


Copyright 2019 Sharon Fagan McDermott.

Sharon Fagan McDermott is a poet, musician, and a teacher of literature at a private school in Pittsburgh, PA. Her most recent collection of poetry, Life Without Furniturepublished by Jacar Press (2018) wrestles with finding and feeling at home in the world and seeking sanctuary in an often challenging life

One comment on “Sharon Fagan McDermott: The Book of Lesser Angers

  1. Tricia Knoll
    March 8, 2019

    A rich metaphor well done!

    Liked by 1 person

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