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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 8, Number 3, September 2014


Carol Judkins
Carlsbad, California, USA

Into The Woods

And who can tell, What’s waiting on the journey?

—Stephen Sondheim

Twilight. Of this day, of her life. She takes a stroll in the country, lifts her eyes to the reds and gold, the fade to purple as the sky darkens. In the distance, the sounds of a train whistle. California poppies course a wayward path, having moved away from the straight and narrow journey of steel. She smiles, awakened to the memory of a once-trod path.

empty nest—
the robin trills
a siren song

She rarely thinks of him anymore, but there it is: a moment years ago. He wrote poetry, speaking of love for her that would fill seven hearts. He called her his beacon, bringing him home. Married for years to a taciturn man, this was water for a woman adrift in a vast ocean. Excited and scared, she walked through his open door. All of his collection of lighthouses was blinking, some by candlelight. He held out a cup of coffee, but before she lifted it to her mouth, he kissed her. The candles dimmed, and the coffee remained unsipped.

Another train whistle, closer now, brings her back. A little sprinkle of rain falls, but no matter. There is no mistaking his gait; he has come, carrying an umbrella, to bring her home.

now, voyager
on a moonless eve,
the stars
no giants in the sky
to obscure the light



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