Tag Archives: Diane Lockward

The Morphology of Mushrooms
by Diane Lockward

When my young son asks, What’s a mushroom?
I tell him his face, his belly, his thighs.
I touch each spongy part of him with my finger.
He is deep into Wonderland, knows Alice
and the caterpillar, and hungers for more.
I give him edible fungus and nibble a toe.
I give him raised on a farm or wild in the forest.
Nourished by worms and redolent of iron.
I give him the fruiting body, spore-bearing and fleshy.
And under the dome, a network of blade-like gills
delicate as lace, fragile as a spider’s web.
Squat tree, rubber umbrella, one-legged stool.
And on the lawn, ephemeral as a magic trick—
here in the morning, then the swift farewell.
I give him fairy ring, porcini, hen-of-the-woods.
Food for royalty. Ancient promise of immortality.
I do not give him atomic plume, or the locket,
mist of death cap hidden inside like a drop
of perfume. One dab on the lips, a different kind
of goodbye. Tonight, I slip the music of mushrooms
into his mouth—chanterelle, portobello, morel.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 16, Issue 3.

Diane Lockward

Diane Lockward is the author of The Crafty Poet: A Portable Workshop (Wind Publications, 2013) and three poetry books, most recently Temptation by Water. Her work has also been featured on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, and The Writer’s Almanac.

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Cider Press Review Volume 16, Issue 3 Debuts July 1

CPR Volume 16, Issue 3The latest issue of Cider Press Review, Volume 16, Issue 3, premiers overnight July 1, 2014 starting at midnight (PST).

Volume 16, Issue 3 includes poems by Nancy Carol Moody, Maggie Blake, Gemma Cooper-Novack, Jose Araguz, Carol V. Davis, Colleen Michaels, Mary Moore, Kevin Phan, Diane Lockward, Gary Hawkins, Sandra Marchetti, Carol Berg, Andrea Potos, Jennifer Jackson Berry, Lisa Cihlar, S. Jordan, Marq Wilson, Jimmie Cumbie, Louisa Howerow, Mark Wagenaar, Susannah Nevison, Sarah Henning, Rebecca Baggett, Evelyn Farbman, and Sharon Chmielarz. Review of Anthony DiMatteo’s “Beautiful Problems: Poems” by Susana H. Case.