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Maureen Tolman Flannery


From the Great Silence

In the days of the great silence
there lived a plain woman
called by the name of Hermosilla.
And it came to pass one day

as she was drawing water from the spring
a brave storm began to rage around her,
circling into funnels in the sky as though
it would bore a hole in the separation of worlds.

As she stared, transfixed, at what took place
above the ground a mighty sword descended
through a cloud of swirling sand,
landing blade-down directly at her feet.

Being ill-apprised of its meaning,
she clasped the hilt in her right hand
and found that it fit as if having been
crafted for the texture of her palm.

She left her bucket unattended
and strode forth, calm, from the spring,
the sword slicing a path through blowing sand
and a harsh wind at her back.


Maureen Tolman Flannery, author of Secret of the Rising Up: Poems of Mexico and Remembered Into Life, edited the anthology Knowing Stones: Poems of Exotic Places. Although she grew up on a Wyoming sheep and cattle ranch, she and her actor husband Dan raised their four children in Chicago. Her poems can be read in the online chapbook Conversations for the Road at www.tmpoetry.com. Her work has appeared in over a hundred literary reviews, most recently Atlanta Review, Meridians, Amherst Review, and Comstock Review and thirty-five anthologies including Intimate Kisses, Essential Love, Woven on the Wind, Intensive Care, Tokens, and Proposing on the Brooklyn Bridge.
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