Leave a comment

March 1, 2014 by The Citron Review

by Helen Wickes


You can hear the farmer with his tractor
humming above the drying winds of March,
the Harrow turning the barren ground.
Then there’s that famous Harrowing of Hell,

often painted as one hand reaching down
from a fleecy cloud-bank to yank a few souls
up to graceland. The newly saved ones blink
in the glare, little ghosts inquiring
what their redeemer means for them
to do now. And during the Mystery Plays,

the Baker’s Guild portrayed the Harrowing best:
masters of fire, smoke, and noxious smells,
they amplified the show with clashing pots
and pans, yearly creating a Hell-on-schedule,
Hell-on-earth, Hell for an evening.
Halloo, howls the spotted Harrier hound,

having treed the squirrel, howling as if
he’d found a long-lost piece of himself.
Which he’ll Harass, nearly to death, so then,
we get to the verb, to Harry: to afflict, what stops
your breath, strikes you dumb, cools your blood,
as in Hark, who goes there?

We’ll stop with Chardin’s dead Hare, stretched out
beside the twined snare that snapped his neck.
You could almost stroke his fur. His breath gone,
his body warm. Easy to imagine there’s still time
for him to escape from Harm, leap from the canvas
and flee to his burrow.


Helen Wickes grew up on a horse farm in Pennsylvania. She lives in Oakland, California, where she worked for many years as a psychotherapist. She received her MFA in 2002 from Bennington College. Her first book of poems, In Search of Landscape, was published in 2007 by Sixteen Rivers Press.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

🍋10th Anniversary

Fall 2019 IssueSeptember 23rd, 2019
70 days to go.

🍋 Instagram

We're pleased to highlight creative nonfiction from Julie Watson. "Odds Are" is now available in our Summer Issue. https://citronreview.com/2019/06/21/odds-are/ #amreading #flashcnf #summerissue #cheersto10years
Anita Goveas, @raspberrybakewell, has fiction featured in our Summer Issue. https://citronreview.com/2019/06/21/coverings/ #amreading #flashfiction #summerissue #cheersto10years
New Flash Fiction from Mary Grimm, who has published a novel, Left to Themselves and a collection of stories, Stealing Time (which are both on Random House). She teaches fiction writing at Case Western Reserve University. https://citronreview.com/…/…/21/the-dream-of-her-long-dying/ #TheCitronReview #SummerIssue #Summer2019 #flashfiction #cheersto10years
Creative Nonfiction from our new Summer issue, "What About Me?" by Phyllis Reilly. https://citronreview.com/2019/06/21/what-about-me/ #TheCitronReview #SummerIssue #Summer2019 #flashcnf #cheersto10years
From our summer issue, "How Much Snow" by Erik Moellering. Erik Moellering teaches English at A-B Tech Community College in Asheville, NC, where he also performs in a variety of theatrical productions. https://citronreview.com/2019/06/21/how-much-snow/ #TheCitronReview #SummerIssue #CitronSix #Summer2019 #poetry #cheersto10years
The Summer 2019 Issue of the The Citron Review is brimming with amazing contributors. We want to thank them and hope you'll thank them too! Erik Moellering, Andrea Jurjević, David Galloway, Jennifer Metsker, Kendall Babl, Rogan Kelly, B.J. Best, Melanie McGee Bianchi, Emanuele Pettener, Thomas De Angelis, A. Grifa Ismaili, Julie Watson, Jill Chmelko, Kelle Schillaci Clarke, Phyllis Reilly, Elyse Giaimo, Anita Goveas, Mary Grimm, Carla Scarano D’Antonio, Megan Anning. #amreading #anonlinejournalofbriefliterature

Enter your email address to follow us and receive notifications of new issues by email.

%d bloggers like this: