Mermaids in the Basement | Deborah Purdy

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Originally from Virginia, Deborah Purdy graduated from Hollins College (now University) with B.A. and M.A. degrees in Psychology. She also earned a masters degree in Library and Information Science from Clarion University. She has worked as a research scientist and a reference librarian. She now lives outside Philadelphia where she writes poetry and creates fiber art. She is the author of Two Moons (rinky dink press) and Conjuring an Epiphany (forthcoming from Finishing Line Press). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Cleaver Magazine, The American Poetry Journal, Gingerbread House Literary Magazine, Mom Egg Review, Muddy River Poetry Review, Capsule Stories, and other publications. Her poems have been published in anthologies including Moving Images: Poetry Inspired by Cinema.




 Old Rain

I looked for you before
when Sappho was a living girl —

When breath blew back
over fields of frozen calm

the wrinkles of the road
made one small spot a continent.

All the things we ever knew
flowed silver to the west.

Parting with a world
I turned and looked another way,

Made my answerings,
And I scratched the wind and whined.






Edna St. Vincent Millay, “Passer Mortuus Est”

Emily Dickinson, “To March”
Emily Dickinson, “In A Library”

Emily Dickinson, “Called Back”
Rose Hawthorne Lathrop, “In the Artillery”

Emily Dickinson, “The Snow”
Louisa May Alcott, “Thoreau’s Flute”

Edna St. Vincent Millay, “Mariposa”
Emily Dickinson, “A Poor Torn Heart, A Tattered Heart”

Emily Dickinson, “Ending”
Edna St. Vincent Millay, “Renascence”

Edna St. Vincent Millay, “The Shroud”
Edna St. Vincent Millay, “She is Overheard Singing”