A Curvature of Bone

By Patty Dickson Pieczka

This spine is a rock-strewn path

that will survive once I am gone.

Walking its twists beneath stars


planted in a crooked row, I look

for paths that might open when

confines of the body divert fate,


the way a levee changes the course

of water, or light spills patterns

over the lake through spaces


between branches of a birch,

its paper the color of lightning,

of peeled almonds, of shells


partially covered with sand,

stones threaded together

with tenuous ligaments.


As the recipient of the Library of Poetry Book Award for 2012 from the Bitter Oleander Press, Patty Dickson Pieczka‘s second book, Painting the Egret’s Echo was published in 2013. Other awards include the 2010 Frances Locke Memorial Poetry Award, first place in the ISPS poetry contest for 2012 in the free verse category, and a nomination for an Illinois Arts Council Award. She is the author of the book Lacing Through Time (Bellowing Ark Press, 2011), and a chapbook, Word Paintings, (Snark Publishing, 2002). She graduated from the Creative Writing Program at Southern Illinois University.  Writing contributions have appeared in many journals, including Bluestem, The Bitter Oleander, Blue Unicorn, Crab Orchard Review, Eureka Literary Magazine, Red Rock Review, Sierra Nevada Review, Willow Review, and The Cape Rock.

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