Winner of the First Horizon Award for superior work by a debut author.

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Out of town smile


Hopeful eyes, with an out of town smile,

She walks with her place in a paperback novel.

At darkened storefront windows, pad-locked with recession proofs plans,

She peaks inward to the swirling City;

Only in reflections will she, can she.


Now, monologues unfold as she walks along,

Half-words and phrases seep to the surface.

She breaths them softly, barely parting her lips,

hardly giving in as they fight to be heard, these

hundreds of first lines to stories she will never write.

Never to overcome the first-line barrier,

Never to encounter the pen to paper interface.


these lines without destiny;

her lines without life.


Unwritten words pour from her pores

like luscious raindrops on lazy April afternoons;

Unwritten, with rhythmic free verse and couplets of metaphor.

Unwritten as they spill from her eyes at night and watch the world moving without her.

As she holds her place firm in a paperback novel.



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