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"Put your ear down close to your soul and listen hard." Anne Sexton 

Heather Brager is a critically acclaimed juggler of calamity, an accomplished procrastinator, and shuffler of idioms. Her poetry and drawings can be found in various digital and print journals around the globe, and on the web.  She currently resides in New England and prefers the precipice of where the Atlantic meets the sand to the official looking office where she spends most of her time. 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

a private memory.

I am not writing a memoir
with you, or with him
but loss to fire
theft to drowning under the bridge
over the clouds
please temper your wings

love to love, loss to love
another chapter passed to flames
swallowing my words
while I am vilified
licking my fingers
abandoning all perspective

didn’t your heart twist around
fleeing from panic
through the open windows
through my fingertips
carrying all of my emotions

the lead and anvil
shining stones, and fervor
woven through our smiling teeth
the backs of our necks
with careful, dying cadence

didn’t our voices
vanish into thin air
through grace and thunder
water and smoke
to stroke you inside
out and asleep

© 5.31.2016 heather brager

Sunday, May 29, 2016


tiptoeing across creaking floors 
the moment will arrive
to compare our contrasts
by measurement of wisdom
or clumsy sculpture of human frailty

left alone far out in the dark
synergy drives us blind
sneaking around with disaster 
quietly hiding from each other  
in an abandoned place we still love

we are dissolved and rebuilt
in a continuous and perpetual wave
in carefully plotted formations 
gliding over the piers
breathless for nourishment

© 5.29.2016 heather brager

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


that night she was left standing
darkness swallowed her hands and hair
in the black hole of a parking lot
the misplaced demons tempted
by fire and alcohol in her veins

she hunted contentment alone
shrouded in oblique metaphors
discarded words tangled at the shoreline
un-tethered and left for bait, but
still able to recall the sunlight

she denied acting a martyr
with surrender on her breath
carrying the beasts and their burdens
coveting luck and defiant worship

she longed for painless resurrection 

© 5.18.2016 heather brager

Wednesday, May 11, 2016


in that stationary instant
the world fell into tumbling shards
breath ceased to feed oxygen into her cells
every living thing pulverized each organ and limb
bark peeled simultaneously from every tree
roots arched and heaved from the earth
leaves quivered to the ground
bursting into aqua flame
and were gone

© 5.11.2016 heather brager

Friday, May 6, 2016

a glass half empty.

she listens for you out of habit
beyond the bass of the 
upstairs television

children quietly breathing 
through their own dreams
in another room

watered down drink in her hand 
she still waits for your
fingers resting gently on her hair

come lie next to me, you whisper
put down your glass
it's time for sleep

© 5.6.2016 heather brager

Monday, May 2, 2016

camera obscura.

driving down hampshire street
passing quiet and empty pubs
strangers opening doorways
near the starlight lounge
I remember the book with a red cover
left in the hands of a beautiful stranger
he is soon to marry
and I am still driving 
down hampshire street 

I see now, more than ever
you are the same as you ever were
and couldn't be more distant
stripped-down, your light gives to lies
and where do I go, where do I go 
when I feel everything 
and know nothing

this man, lost soul hovering above me
I would rearrange my books
this cup of coffee, rye in a glass with a square ice cube
I realize now that searching takes me nowhere
everything I need will find me
the skeleton key is no longer trapped 
inside the kingdom
and I gave you a damn good reason to stay

© 5.2.2016 heather brager