Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
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SHJ Issue 12
Spring 2015

[Two Poems]

by Tamara Hollins

The wind shifted, and 19 friends died

after the wind shifted
how many attempts were 
there to reach you
how many phones rang
desperate hope
into the storm of the heat
how many loved ones placed calls
to phones that rang and then melted
as the saving color yellow dissolved into red?




what was it like in the woods that day
when you walked to the cabin
swinging a basket by your side
did light dapple the earthen path
the pattern shifting as the wind shifted the leaves
did you see cardinals dart away
from an odd rustle that you couldn’t hear
and wouldn’t hear
until it was too late
was someone expecting you
waiting well past sunset
expectation turning to hope and prayer
did you somehow veer off the path
clinging to that basket
leaving only your absence behind?


SHJ Issue 12
Spring 2015

Tamara Hollins

has earned the following degrees: a B.A. in Art, with distinction, from Hendrix College; an M.A. in Cultural Studies from Claremont Graduate University; an M.F.A. in Writing and Literature from Bennington College; and a Ph.D. in English from Claremont Graduate University. Her scholarly work, creative writing, and art have been published in journals, anthologies, and encyclopedias. Her research interest is the production and the construction of identity in American literature. She is an Associate Professor of English.

“...we have been born here to witness and celebrate. We wonder at our purpose for living. Our purpose
is to perceive the fantastic. Why have a universe if there is no audience?” — Ray Bradbury