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M.J. Iuppa

Advent

I can no longer tell the hour
in constant darkness. Is it night
or morning, or a week later,
a gathering snowstorm?

I hear a thin whistle of a red
bird as it flies into the crabapple’s
crown, twitching like a tiny flare,
its carol, a lesson in light. 

I take no energy or spirit, other
than the weight of clouds, lifting
this shroud— my lungs burning
in winter’s incessant cold.

The news, the terrible news
arrives in threes:  a text,
a call to call back— a result.
Still, I wake to gauzy

gray light— this ragged
woolly essence— something
fuzzy, or is it scratchy?
Something, still mine.



Nothing Is What It Seems

Today, beneath the crab apple, I
found a red feather lying near puddles

and loose stones, like a tiny flame, it
dazzled briefly in noon’s chilly over-

cast—this flicker of the past—my desire
to be lasting—my cheeks flushed

with the feather’s certainty, readying
to take flight.

M.J. Iuppa  is the Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Minor Program and Lecturer in Creative Writing at St. John Fisher College; and since 2000 to present, is a part time lecturer in Creative Writing at The College at Brockport. Since 1986, she has been a teaching artist, working with students, K-12, in Rochester, NY, and surrounding area. Most recently, she was awarded the New York State Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Adjunct Teaching, 2017. She has four full length poetry collections, This Thirst (Kelsay Books, 2017), Small Worlds Floating (2016) as well as Within Reach (2010) both from Cherry Grove Collections; Night Traveler (Foothills Publishing, 2003); and 5 chapbooks. She lives on a small farm in Hamlin NY.

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