Welcome back to Member Monday. The Writers Forum board sends our sincerest congratulations to Writers Forum member Jennifer Phelps, who was recently published in the 2013 issue of the Santa Fe Literary Review. The review selected her poem Cigarettes in the Volkswagen.
Cigarettes in the Volkswagen
by Jennifer Phelps
She found them between the front seats
of her mother’s old VW bug:
two dry husks of cigarettes, long forgotten,
discovered as she dutifully detailed the car –
a teenager’s task – cramming the vacuum
crevice tool into that awkward abyss,
sucking up tarnished pennies and old French fries,
the Volkswagen an accidental time capsule,
the Viceroys evidence of the free spirit
her mother was once, before she became wife,
Mom, perfectionist, tyrant –
maybe even before she became unhappy.
Back then she was just a kid selling records
at the music store on Fourth Street,
listening to Janis Joplin wail and sob on LP,
staying up late, talking and smoking,
making plans as if her ideals could never
be bruised with the blunt force of disappointment,
as if she would never assume
the heavy veil of responsibility,
as if the day would never come when she could love
her unborn daughter enough
to quit for good the carefree nicotine habit,
as if that daughter would never grow up to write
reminiscent poetry labeling her mother tyrannical, unhappy;
the same daughter who took a moment’s pause
from her cleaning chore to pick up those cigarettes –
those tattered testimonials to a long-forgotten innocence –
touching them briefly to her lips in a kiss
before reluctantly letting them go.
A Note from the Webmaster: If you’re a Writers Forum member in good standing and would like to be featured on Member Monday, please send your submission to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions should be 75-750 words, appropriate for all ages and error free. Please include a short bio, a headshot and any related links. The author retains all rights and gives permission to Writers Forum to publish their submission on the website and/or in the newsletter. Thank you!
I knew you had it…
wow – very moving Jennifer!
Thanks so much for your comments, and to Writers Forum for all the support over the years. We are so lucky to have a local group like this….
Reblogged this on nakednotebook.net and commented:
So honored to be featured on Member Monday!