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Lorraine Healy

Lorraine Healy


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Lorraine Healy, award-winning poet and photographer, holds an M.F.A. from New England College and a postM.F.A. in Teaching of Creative Writing from Antioch University, Los Angeles, as well as a Licenciatura in Modern Literature from her native Argentina. Called “one of the finest emerging poets” at work today by poet and critic Alicia Ostriker, Healy combines a solid grounding in the literary canon with an irrepressible playfulness with language and reverence for the natural world.

Healy was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2004 and was the first poet ever to receive American residence solely on the merits of her work. The winner of the 2009 Tebot Bach Prize, her first full-length volume The Habit of Buenos Aires was published in 2010, followed by the chapbook Abraham’s Voices in 2014.

Lorraine’s love for vintage and simple plastic film cameras has led to an extensive writing career in the world of analog photography. She lives on Whidbey Island, Washington, where she is at work on her next poetry book.

In Mostly Luck: Odes & Other Poems of Praise, Healy draws from the Spanish tradition of Machado, García Lorca, Hernández, Vallejo, and very especially, Neruda, to gaze upon her adopted Pacific Northwest landscape with luminous insight.

MostlyLuck: $15.00

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Poem from Mostly Luck

Ode to Vicky's Goats

It is the time when they start dropping
in twos, in threes,
and some are a week old
and they bound on secret springs
and some a few minutes old
sticky with afterbirth,
tiny stunned packages under the ewe’s legs.

There is no end to mud and cold
this February—Vicky
makes all the kids coats
from cut-off sweatshirts’ sleeves
and they crowd out of the barn
to jump on cable-spool tables,
a spill of colored marbles
with minds of their own.

And I sit and become
another piece of furniture,
and they rain on me,
solid pellets of joy
in cotton envelopes,
who forgive the embarrassment
of my humanness and munch
on my bangs,
their nothing teeth and warm skinny tongues
suckling my fingers with right abandon.

The mothers headbutt my sides,
they too want human hands
scratching between their eyes,
their soft Nubian ears,
and my voice to praise their beautiful
children who now hang from their udders
like bell claps.

The world here smells of ammonia
and straw, of wet soil,
of goat upon goat. The immense
white sheepdog keeps his amber eye
on everything, head nested
on his outstretched paws.
I would like
to marry him.
I would like
that serene wet nose
on my shoulder when I wake.

And small goats in bright sweaters
butt him, bounce off him,
flip, climb as if the air
had holds in it,
all the air has is drizzle,
all the little goats need
is one corner of morning,
they can find a day’s invisible ladders
on their own.