A random stone sits upon the dresser:
green slate culled from walks along the river,
its striated shades as varied as the sea—
fern from forest, olive drab of army,

new buds sprouting sunshine among the trees.
This silent charm once sang me sweetest psalm
now locks down papers from a window’s breeze.
Warmed by your touch, it served as healing balm,

quieting my ache when placed on bruising knee,
encircled by slim fingers that once blessed me.
Its mood has changed, its master shaman gone,
from vibrant voice to murky and withdrawn.

And yet, I cherish its dirgeless, wordless mourn,
admire its resignation to a blind god’s scorn.


Roxanne Hoffman worked on Wall Street. She now answers a patient hotline for a New York home healthcare provider and runs a small press, POETS WEAR PRADA. Her words can be found on and off the net in such literary journals as Amaze: The Cinquain Journal, Best Poem, Clockwise Cat, Danse Macabre, The Fib Review, Hospital Drive, Lucid Rhythms, MOBIUS: The Poetry Magazine, The Pedestal Magazine, and Shaking Like a Mountain; the indie flick Love and the Vampire; and in multiple anthologies including The Bandana Republic: A Literary Anthology by Gang Members  and Their Affiliates (Soft Skull Press),  Love After 70 (Wising Up Press), and most recently It All Changed in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure (Harper Perennial).

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