Cordelia Hanemann – 2 poems

A visit from memory


You always show up

on my doorstop     that old suitcase

strapped together      in tatters

from overuse     much travel

much showing up     bringing

hostess-gifts I never need

or want–sour lemon marmalade

(who eats lemon marmalade anyway)

hard candies     roasted peanuts

and praline sauce    to sweeten

the visit     turn crackers into pie


a tourist           really        no

a poor relation looking for a handout

not money       just your pound of flesh

ready to rehash all      the old famil-

iar stories      all those dead horses

what we haven’t thought about

in years           like an old fish

hooks in the mouth     skin peeling

off in leathery strips   jaundiced

eyes glazed     no gills wheezing   

a trophy        


            the unpacking     out come    

the tawdry old wares        worn shoes           

soiled shirts     wrinkled pants                 derelict      

until I guess     you grow weary

or nostalgic for home     and I wake

to fix  breakfast and      blessed

you are gone      the house     oddly still

and silent        with new dead hours.



Sharing Figs  


I planted the ficus “Brown Turkey”

beneath three tall pines, because

it was the one spot that got some sun,

because I wanted figs: figs to own,

figs to pick, figs to eat—imagine

figs for the asking, figs for the taking,

my very own tree in my very own yard.

Four figs would do. But,


            I lived a figless life. My tree plumped

forth just hard little green nuggets,

clutching brittle brown branches.

Squirrels mistook them for nuts

and scuttled off with my crop.

Not even four figs for me

from the spindly bush competing

with towering pines. Now,


            pine trees are gone to ice storms;

my wimpy “Brown Turkey” is huge

and covered in figs—luscious, plump

purple, and syrupy sweet: figs for birds,

who dive in for a bite, move on

to make room for bees, ants and huge

ugly fig beetles. And,


            since I still get no figs and am not

in the bug-, bird-, and beast-feeding

business—and all I ever wanted was

four—just four inviolate figs of my own,

I’m cutting it down after summer is past.

I’m waiting till late fall, in case, I might

salvage a fig or two before first frost.



Cordelia Hanemann is currently a practicing writer and artist in Raleigh, NC. A retired professor of English at Campbell University, she has published in numerous journals including Atlanta Review, Connecticut River Review, Southwestern Review, and Laurel Review; anthologies, The Poet Magazine’s new anthology, Friends and FriendshipHeron Clan and Kakalak and in her own chapbook, Through a Glass Darkly. Her poem, “photo-op” was a finalist in the Poems of Resistance competition at Sable Press and her poem “Cezanne’s Apples” was nominated for a Pushcart. Recently the featured poet for Negative Capability Press and The Alexandria Quarterly, she is now working on a first novel, about her roots in Cajun Louisiana. 

By Heavenly Flower Publishing

Bindweed Magazine publishes two anthologies each year: Midsummer Madness and Winter Wonderland. Bindweed is run as a not for profit, labour of love endeavour by an author/poet couple: Leilanie Stewart and Joseph Robert. Bindweed can be found at

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