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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 23: 28 April 2024
Prose Poem: 181 words
By LeeAnn Pickrell



I want to write my father back. Each molecule and moment. I want the afternoons I spent alone with him at the nursing home, when my mother left to run an errand, and I ensconced myself in the sliding rocker where she’d been sitting, between my father’s bed and the window, looking out into the courtyard of cherry trees and dogwood. On the window sill were two photos: one of my brothers and me, on a Sunday morning four years ago, our faces clear in the fall light; the other a black and white of our parents in Paris—seen from a lower vantage point, they appear larger than the Eiffel Tower behind them.

I want April back and those afternoons when I warmed my lap with the shawl the women from their church had knitted for my father, praying, the card said, with each stitch for healing. I read a book as my father napped and then I set it aside to hold his hand, listening to the hushed sounds of our breath, before closing my eyes to sleep.

LeeAnn Pickrell
Issue 23 (April 2024)

is a poet, freelance editor, and managing editor of Jung Journal: Culture & Psyche. Her work has been published in many journals, most recently in Atlanta Review, Loud Coffee Press, MacQueen’s Quinterly, and ONE ART. Her book Gathering the Pieces of Days is forthcoming from Unsolicited Press in 2025.

Author’s website: https://leeannpickrell.com/

Find her on BlueSky: leeannp.bsky.social

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