Charlie M. Broderick

Our Town

The bakery in our town has
Cinnamon rolls masquerading as
Patriotic star spangled doughnuts

Has a quilt shop across the street
With porcelain hand made buttons
In the shape of ice cream cones, a violet hat,
A red heart that fits in my palm

Coincidental it is the same weight as
The bit of chewing gum
You give to me
Palm up
Such a gift

Like the bit of love you placed in my heart
Pinched between forefinger and thumb
It was so like that cinnamon surprise

You asked for some in return
I gave you more than a pinch
I gave it all –
Again and over and again

Because the library here has the solar system
Cut out of shiny silver paper
Hung mostly straight on the walls
Around a yellow sun

I show you how you are the center
Of my everything
By giving you that heart shaped button
And half of my sprinkles,
Scraped from the top, a whole universe
To fit in your hand
Here, in our town


It’s there, a powerful undercurrent that wants to drag me down with it.
what it’s like to drown

but I know what it’s like to drown in the current of
I want
to forget.

It happens in five stages. Drowning.


But it’s not a birthday surprise, no happy shouts; you’re underwater. Muted by
circumstances, slippery liquid agents of destiny.
2.) I hold my breath.
Hold on tight, against my will.
The things I want to forget aren’t what kill me.
My esophagus closes; I suffocate.

3.) (blackness) (sinking)

4.) Jerking, convulsions, tremors, violent trashing, slowed by the weight of the external. This is my body fighting. I cannot speak. My body does for me.

5.) Cardiac Arrest: My heart

Charlie M. Broderick spends her days playing with her husband, daughter, son, and three cats. She writes when she has alone time, which isn’t very often. Currently, she’s working on a poetry collection, a YA saga, a children’s book, and a novel. One of these days she hopes to have time to finish something.