[b]Charles Town[/b]

Spanish moss curtains
fluttering in the wind
A gauzy layer over
the banks of the Ashley.
Down by the market
Ebony skin glistens
Sculpting a basket
of the reedy sawgrass.
The old market echoes
cries from the past
that trail a carriage
of modern day belles.
Sidewalks sizzling
Paddle fans twirling
down Meeting Street
people shuffle.
Over to St. Mary’s
with whispers from the tombs
over to Poogan’s Porch
Miss Zoey speaks.
Lazily sipping on the side porch
trying to catch the afternoon’s breeze.
Over on Queen Street
tantalizing smells waft
calling your name.
At the end of the Battery
regal homes stand
taking notice of
all the years.
The images pieced
create the majestic.
Charles Town
your spirit will always remain.

[b]Talk of Nothing[/b]

talk of nothing
nothing on the black double
tracks of phone line

nothing but birds
birds like crows
or blue jays squawking

birds bearing bad news
news from the Mockingbird
two streets over

news of a neighbor’s death
death by electrocution
fried burnt hair and smoking bones


of nothing

of birds
news of death.

[b]Blackberry Summers[/b]

the summer fruit of mine
tempting on a vine.

Stained hands,
plopping into the tin bucket slowly
stretching highly and bending lowly.

summer fruit,
to be savored to the last bite.
Eaten morning , noon, or night.

butter crowned,
displayed on the windowsill.
Dyed blue mouth getting its fill.

the fruit of blue-black
the memories of my youth take me back.

[b]I’ll Take Ft. Lauderdale[/b]

“New York is cosmopolitan”
Maria once
piped to me.
“Florida” is so pink flamingo-ish.”
but not iced in
dun tinted snow
in mid-winter.

I am loath to leave my
-chlorine scented
-kidney shaped
-palm hated
simply to be

– portly
-Aqua Velvet reeking
-tobacco stained
at the air port terminal
took my new
size 10 Herringbone coat
instead of his when

airport security was frisking
my 11 year old
-peanut butter smudged
-gotta go to the bathroom
– wiggly daughter.
Because they deemed
her squirming terrorist like activities
to be a threat to national security.
Obviously they had never been on a two-hour flight
with a bored child.

instead of being cosmopolitan this winter
I will reapply
another coating of my
– SPF # 25
-Coppertone Bronze tan like a goddess

and simply stare at the
-one legged
by the pool
this winter.

[b]Lunch @ La Belle[/b]

Down to La Belle
for escargot
garlic-butter gravy drippings
down Kelly’s chin
The large lady next
to us reeking of
toilet water
and adorned with a droopy
flies buzzin’ in a craze around my crepe
exhaust filters in
the city sounds
certainly not a Monet
lunch @ La Belle
the monsieur in the tropical print
and polyester pants
belches not-so-discreetly
excuse moi
or something like that
cheap blush wine
tap water in a cobalt blue bottle
re-corked I believe
lunch @ La Belle
Kelly laughs
the sounds and scenery charm
or something like that
Lunch@La Belle

by Carol Parris Krauss (c)2002
([email]ckrauss [at] ahschool [dot] com[/email])

Carol Parris Krauss is a poet and teacher. She currently lives with her daughter Kelly in south Florida. From September to June, Carol teaches English at a local private school. She longs to return to coastal Carolina and inhabit a rustic beach cottage. Her poems are quite visual, complexly simple, and usually about the South.

[b]Author’s Note:[/b]

More of Carol’s poems can be found at [url=http://www.deadmule.com]Dead Mule[/url], [url=http://www.kotapress.com]Kota Press[/url], and The Florida Palm.

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