PoetryIssue 12 | June 2011

A Tufted Titmouse

by Michele Lesko

You are at home in a mob
attracted by others calling
a song any slight bird can sing.
No ascending trill gone unmatched

just the usual birds. Yours is a beer
song, an all-occasion, feather-
my-nest with any quicksilver thing:
some hung-over chick’s discarded
pull-tab plucked from high grass.

Black hair long enough to spiral
your nest’s walls. The object
of her undoing your bright spot
amid long days of sophomore girls
who hear only their own shame

in the song you sing at dawn. Used
up notes repeated ad nauseum.
They say you are common, a tit-
mouse, a comely bird performing
acrobatics in an unruly crowd.

About the author

Michele Lesko has travelled to many of the world’s most well-known cities (London, Paris, San Francisco, Tokyo, Honolulu & Manhattan) but found her trip to Tokyo with her sons, ages two & sixteen, to visit her eldest son, age seventeen, to be the most profound travel experience of her life. Her poetry & short stories have been published in The Avatar Review, Pedestal Magazine, Soundzine, The Southern California Review, and The Yalobousha Review.

Read our current issue:


Two poems by Anne Babson
Vignette, Townhouse, 9 a.m. by Troy Cunio
Night Becomes Day Over the West by Megan Foley
Yukon River Aurora by D. B. Goman
Two Poems by David Havird
Cretan Love Letter by Emily Linstrom
Holland by Rick Mullin
Fear in Kenya by Kristina Pfleegor
The Lounge Lizard by Ed Shacklee
Two Poems by Sarah J. Sloat
Night Flight by Vicki Stannard
Koinonia Farms by Alina Stefanescu
Thessaloniki, Four a.m. by Anastasia Vassos
Imaginary Oceans by Jason Warren
Two Poems by F. J. Williams

Postcard prose

It’s Salty by Kelly Hill

Travel notes

Anchorage in the Great Land by Karen Benning
The Value of Small Money by Megan Hallinan
Screensaver by Sandra Larson
Thirty Cents by Tommy McAree
Gokarna by Kate McCahill
Going Places by Rachel Miller-Howard
Susanville CA: Notes From The Road by Susan Volchok