Kate McNairy

A Cup of Coffee

The neon lights
of a convenient store
beckon me—
some smokes,
a newspaper,
a cup of coffee.

No one is here.
I ring the bell.
No one comes.

As I leave
with nothing,
I see snow tumbling
houses, trees.

So many people
are eager to invite
me to their dwellings,
hunger to tell me
their stories.
Such is the way
with the lonely.

We toy with the idea
of a second life.
If I could,
my love,
I would gladly
begin again.

Raking Leaves

There are passions
of our beings
past flowers,

My heart
received your

In the aftermath
I rake leaves
into the street.

It’s colder
here than usual.
What day is this?

I Have Lost My Favorite Blouse

So I show up for nightly meds
in my handsome trousers,
as I run down the corridor yelling:


The staff takes umbrage:
a strait jacket,
a shot of Haldol.

Patients make no gestures, they’re used to it,
busy using medicinal bongwater.
Perhaps, too, a part of their past?
They stick like velcro to each other.

The world out there is fretful—

we patients join the Club:
delirious, slightly singed hair,
beautifully paranoid.
My little blouse is winsome.
I like to run around wearing nothing at all.

About the Author

I had a chapbook, June Bug, published by Finishing Line Press in 2014. I was a finalist in the Blue Light Press chapbook contest in 2013. I have been published in various magazines. I am on the Editorial Board of The Apple Tree, a magazine for Adult Lifelong Learners, at Empire State College.

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