Wednesday, March 9, 2016

A Poem by Marianne Szlyk

Maryvale Park after the Solstice

On a warm day for January, pond
water clouds over weeds and oak leaves,
ghosts of all I see in summer.

I expected cold, crisp, lifeless water, even
a skim of ice that a glance
would shatter.  I imagine silence, not birds.

Five ducks cluster in a space no
bigger than a puddle.  One duck dabbles
for fish she cannot see.  Others paddle

in place.  The mallards' green heads bring
color to this landscape.  Hidden birds chirp
from the trees.  Above us, a flock

swoops through this park just before dusk.
Today the sun stays past five o'clock.
The new year inches closer to spring.

Marianne Szlyk is a professor at Montgomery College and the editor of The Song Is . . . Recently, she published her second chapbook, I Dream of Empathy, with Flutter Press.  Her first (Listening to Electric Cambodia, Looking Up at Trees of Heaven) was published by Kind of a Hurricane Press.  Her poems have appeared in Long Exposure, Poppy Road Review, Of/with, bird's thumb, Cacti Fur, Snapping Twig, Contemporary American Voices, Jellyfish Whispers, Napalm and Novocain, Silver Birch Press, and other online and print venues including Kind of a Hurricane Press' anthologies.  She hopes that you will consider sending poetry or flash fiction to The Song Is . . . at


  1. I enjoyed this poem very much, Marianne and the surprise of the birds, the "new year inching closer to spring."
    Thank you for this lovely surprise.

  2. "a skim of ice that a glance
    would shatter"

    Your words paint such vivid pictures!