Vox Populi

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Sharon Fagan McDermott | Fragments: An Ars Poetica


No idea but in things, the doctor wrote

and so I build with squares of rugs, frames,

curtains, art. A yellow bowl of grapes.

Sunlight gilding a wren’s tail feathers.


If I could make a sacred space, it would

sing with vowels: bassoon, rune, legume.


The problem with loving words

is all that ambiguity

to embrace. For instance

within the word “ventriloquist,”

there’s “trout” and “rust” and “silver.”


I spend my days circling:

cigarettes ground in the gutter

and crumpled masks caught in hedges.

Pigeons strutting through puddles.

But the red-brick alley near my home

is slick with snow and citrus dawn,

calling me alive to a new Tuesday.


Red grapefruit on the frayed tablecloth.

The house is cold this morning.

Words in the steam of coffee,

in the sunlight glowing

within the blue glass bird.

Copyright 2021 Sharon Fagan McDermott

Sharon Fagan McDermott’s books include Life without Furniture (Jacar, 2018). She lives in Pittsburgh.

Stained glass sun catcher (Etsy)

5 comments on “Sharon Fagan McDermott | Fragments: An Ars Poetica

  1. Marlena
    April 26, 2022

    I grew up in Pittsburgh a long time ago and with your words I can see it, taste, it, smell it, feel it. I also lost a brother whose name begins with B. A friend sent me the vox link to divert my attention away from worrying about knee surgery. Little did he know I would find your words that are so comforting to me.

    Liked by 2 people

    • singsharon
      April 27, 2022

      Thanks very much, Marlene. And I hope your knee surgery went well and you recover swiftly.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Huntington
    April 4, 2022

    Both selections today make me feel as if I sat over warm coffee with a friend. “ oh, you feel that, too?” My bird is a stain glass loon, but oh the words.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Vox Populi
      April 4, 2022

      Yes, I feel that way too. Thanks, Barbara. Michael Simms https://www.michaelsimms.info

      Author of Nightjar Author of American Ash  Founder of Autumn House Press Editor of Vox Populi


      Liked by 2 people

    • singsharon
      April 4, 2022

      Thanks so much, Barbara! It’s one of my quirkier poems (in my humble opinion), but it sure does show how much I like to play with language and paint with images.) Enjoy that cup of coffee! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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This entry was posted on April 4, 2022 by in Opinion Leaders and tagged , , , .

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