By Susan Sanders


a man 
whose name 
she can’t 
forget opened
a heart’s 
door but
later walked
away and
did not
intend to
harm anyone
or be
the last
of his 
own kind

Haunted Honeymoon

Tucson, Arizona’s sunset bled 
when we read our vows, 
then scratched lucky lotto 
tickets before checking into 
The Hotel Congress 59 years 
after Dillinger nearly
escaped. His greed led him
back to ask for the 
suitcase full of loot. 

Perhaps it was bad karma  
hovering around the narrow 
stair well, shot on sight 
his injured limbs slid 
through locked doors
searching for other
people’s money.

Below the high tin ceiling
a fan spun round as you 
moved slow, our lips slippery
with sweat. I rubbed
your strong shoulders, 
stretched your lucky back 

but Dillinger’s apparition 
interfered, a warning of
how a heavy heart
would wreck our 
newly married bliss. 

10 Ways to Stay Post-COVID Sane

1. Lose what you don’t need because you always, make do.
2. Seek peace before anxiety morphs.
3. Forget to remember those who hurt you.
4. Begin to understand what is and what is not. 
5. Consider the wisdom of what is lost. 
6. Figure that no one wants what you want. 
7. Reconfigure the angle of all frayed edges.
8. Learn to leave out dubious doubt.
9. Walk backwards on occasion. 
10. Every object is never closer than it appears. 

Private Luck-Flagstaff, Arizona

Summer’s gray skies
birthed blue monsoons.

Heavy low pressure from your
hush words rise and fall into 

riddled games. How many others have 
fallen for this line beside the train tracks? 

East going west. West going east. Moving cars, 
clanking metal. Loud horn blares, 

tears up rust and leaves dust on my hair.
Sensuous slips from lips as we zip into 
the back alley. Retro art gallery sells 

your hand-blown glass, mauve 
hues swirled curly cues.

Smoke and steam deemed dreamy.
Trails from the heart shadow back 

through the black. Listen very close,
take a quarter, flip it on my back

hope it lands Eagle side up for luck.

Susan Sanders earned a BA in Liberal Arts from Northern Vermont University, and an MA in English from Northern Arizona University. Her poems have appeared in Pinyon, Italian Americana, The Vermont Literary Review, Common Ground Review, Ariel Chart, Poems from the Lockdown, Scarlet Leaf Review, Poetry & COVID, Down in the Dirt, Two Hawks Quarterly, Soapbox, Green Mountains Review, The Lucid Stone, and several others. Her poem, “Torie in Twilight” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2021. Her co-authored collection of poems, Behind These Hills was published by Create Space in 2017.


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