Winter 2006-7

Ernie Wormwood

                and for Lucille Clifton

When I grow up I want to be Stanley Kunitz
                and wear sneaky tennis shoes wherever I want to wear them
flirt and dance with words so longingly they bloom in everyone’s
                where I touch them and they remember me.

I want to be Stanley
                getting younger every year, especially
at Dodge telling about his index cards of meaningful, locked-in
                circulating energy poems by Yeats Blake Hopkins Hardy that have no date
telling about the pastel portrait about his ever burning
the lonely growing where he was a living taboo
                so we know someone else has felt that way too, but still flowered
                                into Stanley.

I almost forgot, I want to sit next to Maxine Kumin on the poetry shelf.

Stanley, this I promise, when I grow up to be you, I will
                celebrate your birthday on July 29 every year maybe with Lucille
We will name you Flower and Gift and Poet
                Most of all we will call out
                                “Beloved “
                        for Stanley Jasspon Kunitz

Can you see us up on the roof
                of the red brick building
at the foot of Green Street
                                waving to you?

Ernie Wormwood is a member of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, a recipient of the Southampton Writer's Conference Poetry Scholarship (2003), and was a finalist in the Dogfish Head Poetry Contest in 2005. Her poems have appeared in Yawp, The Antietam Review, The Cafe Review, Rhino, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, InnisfreePoetry Journal, Convergence, Raintiger, Writer’s Alliance, Upstage Magazine, and in the anthologies Poetic Voices Without Borders and Only the Sea Keeps:  Poetry of the Tsunami.  She lives in Leonardtown, Md. and may be reached at




Poetrybay seeks fine poetry, reviews, commentary and essays without restriction in form or content, and reserves first electronic copyright to all work published. All rights to published work revert to the author following publication. All Email submissions should be in body of email text.

To submit poems write to:

PO Box 114 
Northport NY 11768
or email us at

send comments to

first electronic copyright 2004 poetrybay. 
all rights revert to authors

website comments to