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2 poems

by Ansie Baird

Ansie Baird taught for forty years at The Buffalo Seminary, is a former editor for Earth's Daughters, has taught for Just Buffalo in their Writers In Education program, and participated in the Albright-Knox collaborative entitled: A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words.  Her work has been published a number of times in The Paris Review, as well as in The Southern Review, The Denver Quarterly, The Quarterly,  Western Humanities Review, New Ohio Review and a number of other journals. Her book, In Advance Of All Parting, won the White Pine Press national poetry competition and was published by White Pine Press in 2009. In September of 2016, her second full-length collection of poems, The Solace of Islands, was published by BlazeVOX Press.  In addition, in 2016, she was one of four poets included in Outriders Press book entitled Four Buffalo Poets. Her latest collection, entitled Porch Watch, is being published by The Foundling Press in May of 2019.


                            to "The Call"

                         by George Herbert



Come and change my calloused heart.

Such a heart grown callous by departures. 

It's safer not to count on

Glory in your radiance.

But come when you are so inclined.


We your sheep haphazard scatter and

Occasionally return, trying to believe

Returning will not kill us.

Yes, come if you feel like it.

I won't be keeping track.


From time to time you seem near.

Other times I guess you turn away. 

Ah, don't bother to come. We're doing okay.

Just straggling along. Perhaps

Your not coming is what makes us strong.



If it couldn't be you

it must be the King

It couldn't be you

because you're tangled

in thickets and brambles  

and ditches one after

another or clutched

in the tops of trees

it cannot be true

it couldn't be you

whose big heart

checked out

after too many years

to count

if truth be told

you weren't even old

unless some damn fool

declares seventy five

is plenty of being alive


Not me I counted

on you to keep

climbing the stair

to my tower forever

no time to spare

at least eleven more

years you'd be there


Now when footsteps

sound in the hall

coming near

I kid myself

perhaps he is here

but then when I hear

brisk knocks on the door 

not the way I used to before

I know in my heart it

couldn't be you so

when I hear the bell ring

it must be the King

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