I grew up in Vermillion, South Dakota, and was educated at Stanford University (B.A., English) and the University of Minnesota (M.A., English). I started writing poetry when I was a child and never stopped. For the past thirty years, I’ve lived in Saint Paul, Minnesota, where I teach and consult with arts organizations on their plans and programs. Over the years, I’ve been fortunate in receiving some awards for my poetry, including a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship. My fifth book of poetry, Between Us, will be released in 2016. Visit my website at www.MargaretHasse.com
Bicycles: Of a Kind
Outside the public library, a rusty black bike
shares a lock with another worn bike
stowed in the metal rack. Both nose
their front wheels into the stanchion
like dairy cattle. They lean together in shared
solidarity with all things closely paired:
Barret and Browning on a book lover’s list.
Kissed lips. Two-by-two toward an ark’s hold.
Autumn and leaves in their wedding of gold.
The words empty and nest, come and go,
and a man and a woman, long-married mates,
who slow-walk our block with shuffling gates.
Consideration of the Feet
Lying back in a hot bath
I lift my legs to look
at my feet above the water
like two rosy babies just born.
I delicately pat them dry.
They chum around together—
twin girls dressed alike
in fluffy pink mules.
I think how death
with its blue chill
first visits the feet.
Standing and looking down,
the platters of my feet
with their teacup ankles
look small to hold up
the largess of me.
These feet were voyageurs
enabling me to carry a canoe
from my shoulders
like a dinosaur spine.
They have been wild to waltz.
They march when I am mad,
have their weaknesses
for flip-flops with plastic flowers.
I present my feet to
a white-masked woman
in a beauty parlor who hums
the hymn All Things Bright
and Beautiful as she works.
I imagine the bent head
of a kneeling Jesus
with his basin of water and oil.
-both poems published in Earth’s Appetite (Nodin Press 2013)
©2016 Margaret Hasse