PoetryIssue 11 | January 2011


by Lisa Ortiz

Mornings here, I put my French on: underthings, white blouse, a tight skirt.
I dress letter by letter, I wear my accent comme ci.

To the fleuriste, I am charming
with my child-language-syntax,
the way I knock over with my draped elbows
glass shelves and vases, shatter
imperfect verbs.
Astonishingly, I know the word jonquille;
with azaliée, I get lucky.

Having said my piece, I clutch a madness of daffodils,
a profundity of azaleas. The bouquet rustles
and down the wet stairs, my shoes and skirt
click and swish. On the Metro
everyone is silent.

About the author

Lisa Allen Ortiz has been shot at on the mountains of Peru and held by INTERPOL on suspicion of drug smuggling in Columbia, but all the good times have been in Paris. Her work has appeared in the Comstock Review, Crab Creek Review, and Zyzzyva and has been featured on Verse Daily. Read her chapbook.

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