Catherine Chandler's Poetry Blog

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Another Poem for "Quadrant"

"Ruelle en hiver, Montréal", photo by Jean Cazes. Source:

My poem, "Wherein the Snow is Hid" (whose title comes from the Book of Job) has just been accepted for publication in Quadrant, a prestigious Australian literary and cultural print journal.

The poem, written in five jagged, heterometrical stanzas of slant rhyme, digs deep into the leftover snow of March and, by the final line (whose final word is a play on the québécois word "glace"), rediscovers beauty and love.

Thank you, Les Murray for accepting another of my poems for your wonderful journal!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Chiaroscuro - Mother's Day 2013

Catherine Chandler and her mother, Bernice Smith Chandler, May 1951 (photo by Bernard F. Chandler, Sr.)

I scanned this photograph and inserted it in a book entitled Mother and Daughter Reflections by Pat Ross, and gave it to my mother on her 75th birthday. On the back of the photograph I had written:

Here, Bernice Smith Chandler, not quite 21 years old, is holding up her daughter, Catherine Marie Chandler, 6 months, most likely telling her how, in a few months, she'll be walking. By the looks of it, Cathy is not so sure, and seems more interested in the shadows on the sidewalk. One of my mother's best lessons, it did turn out, was to "stand on your own two feet!"  Love, Cathy, July 2005

When I retrieved this book from my mother's belongings after she passed away in July 2011, I discovered she had placed the scanned photo and message on page 5 of the book, where this quote by Doris Lessing appears:

"She seems to me so fragile that I want to put out my hand to save her from a wrong step, or a careless movement, and at the same time so strong that she is immortal."  

As it turns out, I took many wrong steps and made many careless movements, but I always knew how to make my way back home.

I think about her every day, not just on Mother's Day. But both her absence and her presence are more palpable on this day.

Where Shadow Chases Light

This is my delight,
thus to wait and watch at the wayside
where shadow chases light
and the rain comes in the wake of the summer.

Messengers, with tidings from unknown skies,
greet me and speed along the road.
My heart is glad within,
and the breath of the passing breeze is sweet.

From dawn till dusk I sit here before my door,
and I know that of a sudden
the happy moment will arrive when I shall see.

In the meanwhile I smile and I sing all alone.
In the meanwhile the air is filling with the perfume of promise.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Cento

Emily DIckinson

This morning I discovered that my cento, "I Had Some Things", based on lines from Emily Dickinson, appeared in a review of Theresa M. Welford's book, The Cento: A Collection of Collage Poems, in Verse Wisconsin Online in 2012. "I Had Some Things" appears in my book, Lines of Flight (Able Muse Press, 2011).

My second cento in Welford's collection, "The Bard", based on lines from William Shakespeare, also receives a favorable review HERE.  "The Bard" will appear in my upcoming book, Glad and Sorry Seasons (Biblioasis Press, 2014).