Lyrical Somerville – October 10

On October 10, 2012, in Latest News, by The Somerville Times


Karen Miller

Karen Miller writes The Somerville News:

“I’m a Somerville person, therapist, poet.  I wrote this poem about the Somerville Market Basket. Mostly, right now, besides my practice, I’m writing about a psychiatric hospital in upstate New York that closed in the nineties after 135 years, poems about the people who lived there and their lives.  That will be part of an exhibit of these people’s possessions, photographs, letters, at the Exploratorium Museum in San Francisco, opening in April, 2013.”


Our Market: Somerville Ave., Somerville, Massachusetts, U.S.A. Western Hemisphere, the world, the solar system, the galaxy, the mind of God?  





Market Basket

where you always find


more for your

grace and desperation



Carts pushed hard

in Health and Beauty


Sunday bargains—

Sunday dresses—

mesh and spangle

hearts   Go Red Sox




the dark-eyed children arched

off carts, their wild

trapezes, hum of Hmong,

Italian, Hindi,

white-shirted father

peers through glasses, scolds,

his dark eyes tired, shining.



the broadest aisle, Goya,

beans and rice and mango soda,

golden-foiled Maria cookies—

small hands pull apart the foil,

sweet crumbs in the dairy aisle

where seven heads of cauliflower

(perched on bags of bulbs of garlic,

civic flower of Somerville)

teeter, pitch and roll

and “Sorry, bro I—“


“mami, mami!”



the checkout line—

stares, absorption, irritation,


Blessed are the honest

the forgiving and the overalled

and sing

the many shapes of shoppers

wedded by their wish

to eat

to leave

to meet—

hot air, self-locking carts, and cabbies

half-dead cars alongside

Beemers, torsos

lean on walkers, strollers,

feet flip-flop across

the blacktop lot and


no one killed.


Market Basket—




 – Karen L. Miller


To have your work considered for the LYRICAL send it to:
Doug Holder  25 School St. Somerville, Mass. 02143



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