Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Off the Shelf Archive ~Special Edition Redux

Today, May 22nd, is a certain poet's birthday--one of my favorites, who also happens to be one of the best of friends, (and poets) around.

I am speaking of the inimitable Fireblossom, also known by the real world sobriquet of Shay Caroline Simmons. She has recently published a collection of her poems on Amazon, entitled, My Mad Love, and earlier in the month I put a selection from it on my Off The Shelf page. I promised another one, and so here it is. I saved my very favorite for last.

It's called The Far Garden, one of the first poems I read by Shay that blew me away, something she does pretty routinely, but you know what they say about first times. This one is my idea of magic.

You can find more of Shay's outstanding poetry at her blog, The Word Garden.

Happy Birthday, Shay, and thanks for letting me share your work here, on the Off The Shelf Page.


Here is the previous selection from My Mad Love: The Healing.

The Healing

I spread five fingers and five seasons came;
I kept the one that had no name.

I closed them round the stepchild month;
She felt like love when love is done.

I stuffed the lost one in my mouth,
And spoke things scratching to get out.

The Gypsy wrapped around my eyes,
and by blue evening I was blind.

She wormed her way into my ear
and whispered quite like you, my dear.

She burrowed deep into my brain,
Sweet and sharp like blade and cane.

But when the sweet bitch found my heart,
She bit and sealed the broken part.

© Shay Caroline Simmons, 
2008-2013,  All Rights Reserved.
Used with permission.
by Shay Caroline Simmons
Image: Artist Unknown, via Facebook


  1. Happy Birthday to Shay. She is a very talented poet and I can't wait for today when I receive My Mad Love and of course the book you wrote with her and Kelli. Such a wonderful community with such talent.

    1. Thanks so much, Ayala. I know you will love Shay's book, and thanks for the support. I'd love to see your work in book form!

  2. chewy, visceral and very personal. A wonderful, awe-inspiring poem asking me to get inside my own dirt. Thanks for the introduction (i missed it last time) and a happy birthday to your friend. What a great way to honor her.

  3. I'm really honored to be featured at Off The Shelf, Joy. Thank you, and I want you to know I love that you chose these two poems. Thanks also for the pictures, which go perfectly.


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats

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