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Poetry of Claire Hersom

Yankee Plus Dec 2015


Poetry of Claire Hersom
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Anadama Bread


Winter was the worst.
The farm windows iced inside, wind howled
down off the upper field; through the gauze
curtains it kissed our foreheads, noses buried
in featherbed crazy-quilts. Wooden spindle
framed our heads. It was too cold for ceiling mice.


We always had to pee just before dawn.
When the woodstove fire dwindled,
you could see your breath.
I’d poke my sister to come down the loft stairs
out to the three hole-r in the shed; an unbearable deed.


We’d pull on the crocheted slippers from Great Aunt Ann,
only holding heat for a few steps, down we went,

hands entwined, the flannel nighties hoisted up,

our little derrieres hovering; then jack rabbit quick,

back we went to snuggle while the snow stung the tin roof edge.


We’d cuddle together, drift back to sleep, dreams of flap jacks

and Anadama Bread warm in the kitchen for breakfast.


Supper at the Farm


Nothing prepared me for my grandfather’s

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One Response to Poetry of Claire Hersom

  1. Doris Matthews February 13, 2009 at 7:32 pm #

    One of my jobs on the farm as a young girl was to help my grandfather when it was time to slaughter a few chickens for our family of 7 children, my two sets of grandparents and my mother and father. Being fleet of foot, I would chase and chase until I successfully tackled a chicken and proudly delivered it to him where he promptly slit its throat and drained the blood before dunking in the pail of hot, steaming water. Reading your poem brought the smell of that pail right back into my nose!

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