Yellow Mama Archives II

Dawn L. C. Miller

Acuff, Gale
Ahern, Edward
Allen, R. A.
Alleyne, Chris
Andes, Tom
Arnold, Sandra
Aronoff, Mikki
Ayers, Tony
Baber, Bill
Baird, Meg
Baker, J. D.
Balaz, Joe
Barker, Adelaide
Barker, Tom
Barnett, Brian
Barry, Tina
Bartlett, Daniel C.
Bates, Greta T.
Bayly, Karen
Beckman, Paul
Bellani, Arnaav
Berriozabal, Luis Cuauhtemoc
Beveridge, Robert
Blakey, James
Booth, Brenton
Bracken, Michael
Burke, Wayne F.
Burnwell, Otto
Campbell, J. J.
Cancel, Charlie
Capshaw, Ron
Carr, Steve
Carrabis, Joseph
Cartwright, Steve
Centorbi, David Calogero
Cherches, Peter
Christensen, Jan
Clifton, Gary
Cody, Bethany
Costello, Bruce
Coverly, Harris
Crist, Kenneth James
Cumming, Scott
Davie, Andrew
Davis, Michael D.
Degani, Gay
De Neve, M. A.
Dillon, John J.
Dinsmoor, Robert
Dominguez, Diana
Dorman, Roy
Doughty, Brandon
Doyle, John
Dunham, T. Fox
Ebel, Pamela
Fagan, Brian Peter
Fillion, Tom
Fortier, M. L.
Fowler, Michael
Galef, David
Garnet, George
Garrett, Jack
Graysol, Jacob
Grech, Amy
Greenberg, KJ Hannah
Grey, John
Hagerty, David
Hardin, Scott
Held, Shari
Hicks, Darryl
Hivner, Christopher
Hoerner, Keith
Hohmann, Kurt
Holt, M. J.
Holtzman, Bernard
Holtzman, Bernice
Holtzman, Rebecca
Hopson, Kevin
Hubbs, Damon
Irwin, Daniel S.
Jabaut, Mark
Jermin, Wayne
Jeschonek, Robert
Johns. Roger
Kanner, Mike
Karl, Frank S.
Kempe, Lucinda
Kennedy, Cecilia
Keshigian, Michael
Kirchner, Craig
Kitcher, William
Kompany, James
Kondek, Charlie
Koperwas, Tom
Kreuiter, Victor
Larsen, Ted R.
Le Due, Richard
Leotta, Joan
Lester, Louella
Lubaczewski, Paul
Lucas, Gregory E.
Luer, Ken
Lukas, Anthony
Lyon, Hillary
Mannone, John C.
Margel, Abe
Martinez, Richard
McConnell, Logan
McQuiston, Rick
Middleton, Bradford
Milam, Chris
Miller, Dawn L. C.
Mladinic, Peter
Mobili, Juan
Mullins, Ian
Myers, Beverle Graves
Myers, Jen
Newell, Ben
Nielsen, Ayaz Daryl
Nielsen, Judith
Onken, Bernard
Owen, Deidre J.
Park, Jon
Parker, Becky
Pettus, Robert
Plath, Rob
Potter, John R. C.
Prusky, Steve
Radcliffe, Paul
Reddick, Niles M.
Reedman, Maree
Reutter, G. Emil
Riekki, Ron
Robson, Merrilee
Rockwood, KM
Rollins, Janna
Rose, Brad
Rosmus, Cindy
Ross, Gary Earl
Rowland, C. A.
Saier, Monique
Sarkar, Partha
Scharhag, Lauren
Schauber, Karen
Schildgen, Bob
Schmitt, Di
Sesling, Zvi E.
Short, John
Simpson, Henry
Slota, Richelle Lee
Smith, Elena E.
Snell, Cheryl
Snethen, Daniel G.
Steven, Michael
Stoler, Cathi
Stoll, Don
Surkiewicz, Joe
Swartz, Justin
Taylor, J. M.
Temples. Phillip
Tobin, Tim
Traverso Jr., Dionisio "Don"
Turner, Lamont A.
Tustin, John
Tyrer, DJ
Varghese, Davis
Verlaine, Rp
Viola, Saira
Waldman, Dr. Mel
Al Wassif, Amirah
Weibezahl, Robert
Weil, Lester L.
Weisfeld, Victoria
Weld, Charles
White, Robb
Wilhide, Zachary
Williams, E. E.
Williams, K. A.
Wilsky, Jim
Wiseman-Rose, Sophia
Woods, Jonathan
Young, Mark
Zackel, Fred
Zelvin, Elizabeth
Zeigler, Martin
Zimmerman, Thomas
Zumpe, Lee Clark

The Children

by Dawn L. C. Miller


My mother lost a child,

before she claimed me

by refusing to let me go

until I was born.


A year or so before me, she bled in pain, not understanding

what soft betrayal her body could not do.

As she bent with cramping bleeds on the toilet

she must have felt so alone. 


She told me she sat and moaned and bled until something gushed.

She told me that as she fainted to the floor, she reached to flush

and so, she never knew if I would have had a sister or a brother.

Forgiveness for that flush never came.


I never had that pain, but I had confusion.

Our decision was wisely made, involving

our budget and our two happy children

who filled our lives with busyness.


We would tie the tubes. And this time I was not on the table.

But as I waited in the lobby for his procedure to be done

I heard in my heart’s ears a voice say “mommy, fight for me!”

and I knew something that is not supposed to be:


one’s truest feelings can find a voice.

I made a fool of myself, searching in the corridors

for my husband, to call a stop to the procedure. 

I did not find him. It was done. Forgiveness never came.

I still remember, sometimes, that small voice and wonder what if.


One last child did not come to us:  my daughter’s pain. 

But that is not my story to tell.

Mother power is strong,

forgiveness is weak.

The Deadly Shoes

by Dawn L. C. Miller


Red shoes, glittering red sparkling

upon the silver screen shining:

click three times and you’re home.

Shoes solve everything.


But red, red, red shoes once wished onto your feet

keep you dancing out of control

until someone from the village

mercifully chops off your feet.

Remember the fairy tale? No?


But these were the shoes that fashion made

So point toed, so dictated, de rigeur.

These crushed your toes into a V

and shortened your leg muscles with their stiletto heels

so you could not put your foot down flat.

But who wants to be natural?.

In the fifties. In the sixties.


Ballet shoes with their ribbons were kinder:

box toes packed with lamb’s wool

on pointe. On stage.

So you attempted to fly.

A bouquet of roses landed red at your feet.


Red, red, red, Chinese red

where shoes attained the highest cruelty.

Crushing a small girl’s feet,

bone by fragile bone

to cripple her for the fashion?

No, for Morality,

so she can never run again,

but must hobble the rest of her life,

an ornament in China Red shoes,

paying her price of beauty.

The Sands of Inanna

by Dawn L. C. Miller


scratch the camera lens

hiss at bare legs

rake through hair whipping

a hot wind.


Death waits, restless searing

scent of dust riddled bones

where the faithful, or just

the resigned, stood gun laden.


Dying into each other, shooting by reflex

bodies relaxing, falling, piling

canteens and desert camo—

who they were left imprints and bones.


Now where they were is in her camera lens

swinging to see, walking unwelcome,

seeing their echoes through scratched glass and pixels.


Dawn L. C. Miller holds an MA degree from Washington College, Chestertown, MD.  Her work has been published in The Bluebird Word, Poetic Hours and by Hopeworks.  Her self-published collections include Illuminations and Out of the Basement.  A resident of Maryland’s Eastern Shore, she daily witnesses the effects of human intervention on the forests and marshlands she loves.

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