Episode 43: Suzanne Frischkorn

27 minutes

Suzanne Frischkorn is a talented and prolific poet living in Connecticut, my home state. Listen to her explain how she got into poetry and the poetry scene and what influenced her work and the many similarities that we shared "growing up" in CT as women writers and poets in our formative years.

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Girl on a Bridge book coverYou can purchase Girl on a Bridge here: https://mainstreetragbookstore.com/product/girl-on-a-bridge/

Poem from Girl on a Bridge ---

Great Lash

You wear too much eye makeup. My sister wears too much. People think she's a whore.

Our cornfields were paved in asphalt, sulfur
lights snuffed our stars. When one of us had
no shoes, we went barefoot, walking streets
laid with tar. First we coated lashes blackest
black from tubes of green and pink, our eyes
lined kohl. If it was Thursday we found
boyfriends and waited by the liquor store for
anyone to buy us Smirnoff. Anyone at all.
We were not sweet girls.


*

We were not sweet girls, yet we wore silver
chains with silver hearts & crosses, onyx
rings, blush, lipstick, powder. Hair flipped
by vent brush before entering a night without
stars. Our parents were line dancing, were bank
tellers, were absent. We were a family that knew
nothing about its members.

*

We cut school and watched Foxes.
We cut school and drank vodka.
We cut school and got stoned,
did our makeup, walked the streets.
One of us got out. One of us ran
into our connection working a shoe store,
one of us glimpsed another with a baby,
one of us marries her Thursday night
boyfriend and shatters her image.

*

We were not sweet girls, no. If there had
been corn, or stars? Maybe the deep
sweet girlness would have surfaced ― dreamy
fresh-faced girls ― petals listening to rain.

 

Lit Window Pane book coverYou can purchase Lit Windowpane here:  https://mainstreetragbookstore.com/product/lit-windowpane/

Poem from Lit Windowpane--

Window 

A damp windowsill means nothing— it’s no bird tapping 

     on a pane— I am waiting 

for the swallow’s stone, the anodyne 

     to illness brought by sparrow song.

This morning rain gathers in still puddles and the songbirds

     sing without percussion― loud notes echo 

the empty street— they sing and 

     sing and sing. No owl has brushed its wing

against our windowpane and sunlight

     overcomes the clouds.

Thrush birdsong: lacey throated stars. The April 

      of our fifth year reeds withered around the pond. 

Last summer I painted the porch ceiling 

     robin’s egg blue. Spring now and the sparrows 

weave a nest in our dryer vent.

     I watch you ladder your way into their world, lift 

bits of twine and sticks and string, yet

     you know they will return. How I love you

then— how I should have loved you all along.

 

BIO:  Suzanne Frischkorn is the author of Lit Windowpane (2008), Girl on a Bridge, (2010) and five chapbooks.  Her honors include the Aldrich Poetry Award for her chapbook, Spring Tide, selected by Mary Oliver, an Emerging Writers Fellowship from the Writer’s Center, and an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism.

Visit her website: https://suzannefrischkorn.com/

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