Carolyn Martin

Shall I?

Shall I compare you to a summer's day?
I better not. You'd boil at the trope.
Maybe early spring when squirrels and stellar jays
strut around our yard and ferals tightrope
along the backyard fence? You could burst free
from thaw like crocuses and daffodils
or like the white star-burst magnolia tree
that blooms before cherry and plum. You'd thrill
at arriving first. (I know firsthand,
my dear, that second place does not appeal.)
Of course, if garden images don't stand
a chance of pleasing you, I will repeal
my strategy: you could be the first glow
light years away; you, the first star's echo.

For Bob, an Express Parking Lot Bus Driver on the Early Morning Shift at Portland International

Something endeared. His breathy hello
as the sun pondered a rise. Corny jokes
when we're half-awake and stressed. (Forecasts claim
snow threatens O'Hare. Expected delays.)
Did you hear the one about…? What happens when…?
Diversions earn our groans. He pockets them
like lost coins or scraps of notes left behind.
Every stop: If you boarded here, please write
the station (number) in the (color) zone.
Parental: no lost cars when we come home.
After a week of lonely hotel rooms,
non-stop meetings with mediocre food—
we're back. It's night. No Bob. But station three,
blue zone is scribbled on a sales receipt.


From associate professor of English to management trainer to retiree, Carolyn Martin has journeyed from New Jersey through California to Oregon to discover Douglas firs, months of rain, and dry summers. Her poems and book reviews have appeared in publications throughout North America and the UK, and her fourth collection, A Penchant for Masquerades, is scheduled for an early 2019 release from Unsolicited Press. She is currently the poetry editor of Kosmos Quarterly: journal of global transformation. Find out more about Carolyn at www.carolynmartinpoet.com.


Barbara Crooker
Alexandra Donovan
Jehanne Dubrow
Kathleen Goldbach
Colleen S. Harris
Brittany Hill
Katherine Hoerth
Lynne Knight
Jean L. Kreiling
Angie Macri
Carolyn Martin
Kathleen McClung (Featured Poet)
Mary Mercier
Ann Michael
Leslie Schultz
Myrna Stone
Jean Syed
Ann Christine Tabaka
Sally Thomas
Doris Watts
Joyce Wilson
Marly Youmans


The most recent addition to The Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline is Phillis Wheatley by Kathryn Voorhees.

Kathleen McClung is the recipient of the 2019 Mezzo Cammin Scholarship to the Poetry by the Sea conference.

Megan Marlatt:Looking like large puppet heads, it was "anima", the root of "animation", that led me to the making of the big heads, (or "capgrossos" as they are called in Catalonia where I learned the craft.) Anima is the soul or what breathes life into a being and to animate an inanimate object, an artist must insert a little soul into it. However to bring attention to what is invisible, (the soul), I chose to mold its opposite in solid form: the persona, the ego, the big head, the mask. Nearly every culture across the globe has masks. They allow performers to climb into the skin of another being and witness the other's world from behind their eyes. While doing so, the mask erases all clues of the performer's age, gender, species or race. In this regard, I find them to be the most transformative and empathic of all human artifacts.

32 Poems
The Academy of American Poets
The Atlantic
The Christian Science Monitor
The Cortland Review
Favorite Poem Project
The Frost Place
The Iowa Review
Light Quarterly
Modern American Poetry
The Poem Tree
Poetry Daily
Poetry Society of America
Poets House
Raintown Review
String Poet
Valparaiso Poetry Review
Verse Daily
Women's Poetry Listserv
The Yale Review

Bread Loaf
Poetry by the Sea


Barefoot Muse Press
David Robert Books
David R. Godine Press
Graywolf Press
Headmistress Press
The Johns Hopkins University Press
Louisiana State University Press
Northwestern Univ Press
Ohio Univ Press
Persea Books
Red Hen Press
Texas Tech Univ Press
Tupelo Press
Univ of Akron Press
Univ of Arkansas Press
Univ of Illinois Press
Univ of Iowa Press
Waywiser Press
White Violet Press

City Lights
Grolier Poetry Bookshop
Joseph Fox Bookshop
Prairie Lights
Tattered Cover Bookstore

92nd Street Y
Literary Mothers
Poets & Writers