Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts
  • Home
  • About
  • Archive
  • Bio Notes
  • Bookshelf
  • Contents
  • Submit
SHJ Issue 9
Spring 2014

[Two Poems]

by Karen Douglass

Living Together Alone

Dainty birds gossip
at an open window. An earwig
crawls along the sill. The kitchen
is quiet and unhurried after dinner.
You sulk while I invent things to do.

Barefoot on cool tiles, I run
my hand over the clean counter.
Yellow dishes safe on their shelf.
Knives asleep in their drawer.

Words have been drawn and fired.
In the shadows, something
armed and in a foul mood lurks.
It will eat at us until we part.


Making Sackcloth

While the Arctic icecap melts,
I sit crocheting a blue sweater,

slime grows in acid oceans.
Polar bears starve. When I cannot sleep,

I plan how far I will walk to buy food.
I finger yarn, something manageable, and drift

in the swelter of perpetual carbon-based summer.
The rhythm of the hook and the stitch

forestalls wringing my hands and pacing.
I’ll work the sea-blue sweater, although

this yarn may outlast the Maldives
being swallowed by the sea.


SHJ Issue 9
Spring 2014

Karen Douglass

is a Colorado writer. She has published several short fiction pieces; many poems; a collection of short fiction, Bones in the Chimney; and five books of poetry. The most recent is Two-Gun Lil. She has an MA in English Lit and an MFA in Creative Writing (Vermont College).

Ms. Douglass is a member of Lighthouse Writers’ Workshop and Colorado Independent Publishers Association. You can visit her blog and publication list at:

“...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