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Corona, March 2020


Eyes, nose, mouth—

Inward-facing portals to mortality.

Our lungs take in so many things with air.


We’re inventing new hello’s.

Foregoing touch,

we could bob our heads

or puff up our chests like pigeons. 

Or pirouette like five-year-olds in tutus.

Maybe more of us will bow.


Who knew the universe was listening

when we began to equate success

with “going viral”?

This taste of what “we’re all connected” means—

a slap to wake us or

the first kick of a beating?

A useful test of global systems,

like flushing water through aging pipes? 

Or a frightening one—

pressurized propane seeking the weakest weld?


We know so little yet.

Consider how untrained we are in vigilance,

especially about something we can’t see.

The miracles of biology can be ruthless.

So can we.


As soap and water replace holy water,

let us bless them. As we wash,

let counting seconds be holy too.

As celebrants wash their hands before a ritual,

let our hands summon us to presence

over and over and over and over again.

Prayer wheels,

permanently attached at the wrists.


 © Holly L. Thomas 

There, in the woods


Before dawn while I waited by the road,

a movement in the black woods caught my eye.

A sliver of light hung from a tree

deep in the outstretched arms

of broad-shouldered hardwoods.

It held the far beam of a porch lamp

and danced with a flickered rhythm,

heedless and eerie.


I thought it was a wayward strip of something,

a fragment of a warning strung on wire,

a glittered semaphore,

a boundary mark.

It might as well have been

some shimmering scrap

ripped from an elvish hem.


Last night you told me

you are getting stronger. 

You said your will

is tempering like steel.


What if this glimmer shone

from your new armor?

What if the light in the woods

was your new skin?

Gloria Mundi


On this otherwise undistinguished evening, 

a man at the garage collects money 

in a four-by-five booth 

with a rickety heater, 

his accented “Thank you” 

passed across gloved hands.

A child paws the velour of a pup’s ear, 

wrestling in an uncoordinated tangle—


Somewhere off the Kona coast, 

porpoises are racing for the hell of it. 


Who knows? They could all be God. 

Something mightily bare-skinned and brilliant, 

as like to us 

as the David to the marble 

that waited for so long, 

hovers in the world.


Pluck another apple, Eve,

and finish it.

We are all promises 

watching to see 

how we will keep 


©Holly L. Thomas

Front cobook cover Pluck Another Apple Eve And Finish It Poems by Holly L. Thomas

Pluck Another Apple, Eve, And Finish It

was published in 2019 by

Sun Portal Press and is available from Amazon in paperback and ebook formats. Use Amazon's look inside” feature to see more poems.


Work on book two is underway. 

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