Judy Swann


Judy Swann's work has been published in Lilliput, Thema, Apparatus, Tilt Poetry Magazine, and other venues, both print and online. She is an Iowan living in upstate New York, a tap dancer, a soccer mom, etc.


Two Poems (May 20, 2010. Issue 17.)

Almond Hearts

Dear Almond Balls,

Oh my. How to say this? Almond Balls, No.
Almond Balls is not a name that will get you market share.
Q. Who eats candy, mostly? A. Kids
Q. What is funnier or grosser to kids than the word "balls"?
A. Unprintable words.
Even when they're not sure what it means.
Did you hear about the young boy who told his mommy
I know what the A word is.
What is the word and what does it mean? she inquired.
He said the word. He told her it meant "poop," too.
But it was still the A word like balls is one
of the two big B words. You wouldn't call them
Almond Bitches would you?
I didn't think so,


Jay Bee

The Pleasures of Mourning

I am one of those women who goes chaste
now that desire has died, who used to be so jealous,
the anti-mother, the boyish one of the two of us,
the steam engine, bullet train, please stop me.

You were so ethereally beautiful.
If it weren't for your heavy boots,
you might never have seemed real,
a big black bear hibernating through the snows
of the heart, vacillating between the possible
and the impossible.

I who every day immerse myself in a language
I do not yet know
with dictionaries, reference texts, secondary sources,
every day I am less impressed with learning
and more in awe of instinct,
like you said I would be, before you left.

I can't say when I'll come,
or if I'll use Calvino's words or
some kind of embedded code,
but I will come
and I'll still be talking.