Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
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SHJ Issue 14
Spring 2016

You Are a Bouquet of Atoms Shimmering

by Laurie Lessen-Reiche

One always comes to love life when the doors of sixty
are about to slide open; or when it’s autumn
and the sky can’t decide whether to be sunny or gloomy.

One always loves the exquisite swimmer, gold medal
winner, the sable vulture.

One always loves the shadows beneath the redwood trees
and the ghosts of childhood that sit on diaphanous
blankets having a picnic.

Despite the pain of disintegrating bones, one cannot help but love
the wind and its disciples: kites and balloons and sailboats.

Why be disgruntled with all that will never be
when you’ve come to understand
there is nothing to be?


SHJ Issue 14
Spring 2016

Laurie Lessen-Reiche

is a writer, photographer, painter, and creative writing facilitator who lives part time in London, where she concentrates on photographing the city, particularly Virginia Woolf’s Bloomsbury. She is the author of The Dance of the Carbon-Atom (Mellen Poetry Press, 1996), and has won first place in several contests, including the Riverrun Literary Publication of the University of Colorado Poetry Competition, the national Charlotte Newberger Poetry Prize sponsored by Lilith, and the Mendocino Coast Writers Conference Contest. She is also a member of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley.

It has been her good fortune to share writing with all kinds of people in various settings, from elementary school classrooms and retirement homes to her own house, where she has facilitated a writing group for years. She is also an avid reader—her house holds approximately 5,000 books (if not more), and was once open to the public as part of a home-libraries tour.

Laurie’s writing has been featured or is forthcoming in Phoebe: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Feminist Scholarship, The Dalhousie Review, The Plains Poetry Review, Pegasus Literary Magazine, Princeton Arts Review, Sundog Lit, Slant, Sonoma Mandala, Valley Women’s Voices, Poetry: San Francisco, Sanskrit Literary-Arts Magazine, Grasslands Review, Plainsongs, and Southern Poetry Review, among others.

“...we have been born here to witness and celebrate. We wonder at our purpose for living. Our purpose
is to perceive the fantastic. Why have a universe if there is no audience?” — Ray Bradbury