Moving Poem by
(27 Stories)

Prompted By The Things I Keep

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/ Stories

So I am thinking…


I need to look at everything

in this house that

holds 31 years of marriage

and two grown children’s


and ask this

51 year old

almost single


what do you need?

Which books of 5 full book cases

do you have to have near you?

Which wall hanging/photos

are touchstones of your

equilibrium and peace?

How to condense

whole phrases

into power words…


A poem.


The apartment is lovely

but a 4th of what a house holds.

And I know it is good

I know my closets

and shelves and dressers

are brim full of

Yes, but-clothes

Yes, but its missing a button

Yes, but its too tight around here

Yes but I have no shoes to go with it.

As I survey for

the essential

I realize how over-stuffed

my existence is

with things

and photos

and art

and momentos

and on the other side

of this somewhat

painful, slicing



truer, crisper


Profile photo of January Handl January Handl

Characterizations: been there, moving, right on!, well written


  1. rosie says:

    Dear January, This is such a thoughtful graceful and realistic poem. I am so glad to be able to read your poetry once again. Please be well.

  2. Susan says:

    Condensing your life, like condensing phrases, into a poem. I’m awed speechless at your response to this prompt.

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