Joan McNerney, 5/22/2017
Current Occupation: Volunteer Museum Guide
Former Occupation: Typesetter
Contact Information: I am from Brooklyn, New York and fell in love with poetry when I was nine years old. My first publication was in Young America Sings at fourteen. It has been a long and wonderful journey. After retiring from the advertising business, I have moved to upstate New York near the Albany area. The natural beauty of the area has given me a great deal of inspiration to continue my voyage through the world of literature. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity.
Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary magazines such as Seven Circle Press, Dinner with the Muse, Moonlight Dreamers of Yellow Haze, Blueline, and Halcyon Days. Three Bright Hills Joan McNerney’s poetry has been included in numerous literary magazines such as Press Anthologies, several Poppy Road Review Journals, and numerous Kind of A Hurricane Press Publications have accepted her work. Her latest title is Having Lunch with the Sky and she has four Best of the Net nominations.
Ray comes all winter
with office supplies.
He calls female workers
spread like wild fire.
Besides reams of paper,
ink cartridges, he carries
the sun. Says it fits perfectly
into his bowling bag.
Sprinting upstairs, balancing
boxes of staples, paper clips,
pens, Ray shouts. “I brought
the sun with me today, slung
it right over my shoulder.”
He brings what they all
want on those icy dark
afternoons to make them
feel sizzling warm.
Sally thought everything was
up to luck and she had zero.
Her chances got swept
away with yesterday's trash.
Every day working in this
dumpy dinner slinging hash.
There were the regulars
who knew her name and
left good tips. They had
no place else to go.
Her feet swelled up at
the end of lunch rush.
Sally wiped tables filling
ketchup bottles, salt shakers,
sugar jars while staring out the
window at pulsing rain.
Waiting a half hour for the bus,
winds tangling her hair.
She stopped at the market to
bring a few groceries home.
Struggling now to open her door,
only cold rooms would greet her.
One summer when only seven,
she heard thunderstorms bursting
through skies, watched lightning
slash bright Z’s across night.
Later she studied for hours currents
of mercurial storms and cloud
formations. Stratus, altostratus, cirrus,
cumulus fell swiftly from her lips.
Some places burned with rings of blistering
winds sweeping across the desert. Rains
rammed houses downstream on the plains.
Northern ice bashed trees breaking power lines.
Her desire was to understand grand forces…
tornado, hurricane, drought, blizzard.
Calculating air currents, moisture, heat
or cold indices to predict the atmosphere.
Moods of the sky master puzzled her.
She only knew what she did not know.
Why this same force creates rainbows
yet pummels whole towns with its fists?