about the author

Lee Sennish’s poems have been published in Kestrel, The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, The Alembic, Scholastic Magazine, The Blue Door Quarterly, and The Forum, and her chapbook, I Choose Fire, was a finalist for the Slapering Hol Press Sanger-Stewart Chapbook Contest. She received an MA in literature from Hunter College, where she was advised by Jean Valentine. She currently takes courses at the Hudson Valley Writer’s Center and lives in Cottage Valley, NY.

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Three Poems 

Lee Sennish

Columbia Presbyterian Hospital

I wish that I might visit you
high in your Alpine room.

We would talk quietly,
each word in its own envelope
while the cars below on Westside Drive
move in their own abacus.

I would bring you the earliest flowers
snatched from a mountain’s icy side,
and oranges, one of which you cut
neatly into quarters.

As the river quickens in the last light
we would see the Bridge light up
as if a stone-skipping boy had thrown
a low and glittering star one curve.

The Best Gift

Outside Bldg.17
you broke
from the line,
a perfect


No nightingale, his whole body a spasm
all throat, he catches the A train,
takes sweet Loraine into his arpeggio.

He can’t help it, sometimes stops
to appreciate himself, then raptures off.
He is one grand bird, the sky his Birdland.

Until dawn he teeters drunkenly
on the telephone lines.
Any old street lamp will do.

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