• A hesitant knock at the door.
  • I look out, then down.
  • The neighbor’s little boy,
  • I think his name is Christian,
  • Stands staring at his tennis shoes,
  • Faded t-shirt ripped at the neck.
  • He holds a cup tilted
  • At a forlorn angle,
  • I don’t remember
  • What my mother sent me for,
  • he stammers.
  • Standing at the blue door
  • Of a long life,
  • I can’t remember either.
  • What did I come for?
  • What was it I wanted?

Una Nichols Hynum

Una Nichols Hynum was born in Providence, Rhode Island. Her work has appeared in
The North American Review, Margie, Writers Digest, Spillway, Calyx, San Diego Poetry Annual, and A Year in Ink. She was a finalist for the Hearst Poetry Prize. She has lived in Austria and Germany and around the U.S. as a military wife. “Borrower” appears in her 2010 collection Cup at a Forlorn Angle and is reprinted by permission. Photo credit: Yohana Hynum.

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Susan Luzzaro Dec. 29, 2011 @ 4:19 p.m.

Lovely and evocative. Goes to the heart of the question.


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