The American Journal of Poetry
"Strong Rx Medicine"®


MM Anderson

Sarah's Voice


When the front moved in
circling leaves pulled a cello
tone into our home.
We could not rid ourselves of it
all winter.
Sarah’s voice moaned from
a back hills’ ancestry
complaining about
a New York boy.
We tried to live with
her lament,
but the bow slid

We tried to live with
her lament, but
the front moved in
complaining about
a New York boy
from a back hills’ ancestry.
Sarah’s voice moaned,
but the bow slid,
circling leaves pulled a cello
all winter.
We could not rid ourselves of
the tone in our home.

A New York boy
complaining about
her lament and
the tone in our home
We could not rid ourselves of her
back hills’ ancestry
and we tried to live with
the circling leaves.
But the bow slid
all winter
when the front moved in,
Sarah’s voice moaned.

We tried to rid ourselves of
a New York boy
in our home,
complaining about
a back hills’ ancestry,
but the bow slid,
when the front moved in
Sarah’s voice moaned
all winter—
pulled a cello lament,
the tone,
the circling leaves.

MM Anderson

Stirring Sauce


How will I find you my mother again?
Stirring the russet swirling sauce at the stove?
I search to find the perfect mix,
You guide my wooden spoon in cursive strokes.

I made this in a lover’s kitchen once.
We stood staring into a copper pot,
watching the simmering thickness bubble.
Strange colored continents drifting together.

He was only there for a moment,
but loving him did not bring you back.
Though I thought I heard your
frightened voice through the telephone
the night before your long sleep.
To think by making sauce,
I could reach you without moving.
And in awe, dared to claim your earth-brewed food.



MM ANDERSON grew up in the wheat fields of North Dakota and on the North Shore of Oahu. She studied film at the University of Texas, Austin, and earned an MFA in fiction at the University of Missouri, St. Louis. Her work has appeared in Ploughshares, River Styx and online magazines. She teaches writing, composition, and literature at Lindenwood University and lives in St. Louis with her husband, son and two dogs Nanook and Dakota.



Continue Reading >