This is a mixed-meter verse form I devised to capture a person’s unguarded moment in a way that breaks stereotype.  The parameters are described here.


High noon, time-out.
Duncan McGonagle rests
over his cherrywood desk
with his chin on his palm.
He’s eleven again,
at the beach with his fiery-eyed mom,
and she’s laughing.


Hair blue, eyes grey,
weighing a hundred and two,
Sylvia Sanders Larue
hears a tearful appeal,
sends a check to a fat
televangelist, then shares a meal
with her cat.

Pretty Girl

Blonde-haired, blue-eyed,
Jessica Allison Dean,
cheerleader, homecoming queen,
shuts the door to her room
and then watches the wall
where her stepfather’s shadow will loom
later on.


Two year old boy,
Jonathan Kensington Hurst,
getting a haircut — his first —
sits as still as a mop.
As the curls fall away,
there’s a palpable hush in the shop.
Baby gone.

Traffic Cop

Half-past midnight
Deputy Larry McGee,
upstanding father of three,
stops a speeder. She winks,
shows some thigh, offers more,
and regardless what anyone thinks,
he’s tempted.

In the Bag

Roadside rest stop.
Trucker, Dakota McNabb,
is seated alone in his cab
in the thunder and rain,
flexing fingers that flash
brown and yellow from nicotine stain
and Cheetos.

Fashion Plate

Headshot, freeze frame.
Rosa Veronica Cruz
anchors the six-o’clock news.
She’s the queen of finesse
with her innocent grin
and a safety pin holding her dress



2006 Mary Boren
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