Kansas Cradle — By Morgan O.H. McCune

I came home to find myself

among friends again–the land

rolling beneath me, rivers ferrying

my hope with a soft murmur–

meadowlark, sweet clover,

a hare and her leverets under

per aspera stars cuddling close.


Found now dissembling little boys

rule here, stomp and tell the girls

what clothes to wear, what we should

bear. We hopscotch, the boys watching

our legs hop wide, then together.

Our hearts can stop on command.


Little boys, I was born here

with the hare and the red fox.

My mother, sharp as bluestem blades,

bore me, taught me Red rover,

to call Red rover over the hills,

taught me to shake my cradle.

The stopped heart of a hare

has again begun to beat.

~ Morgan O. H. McCune

Morgan O.H. McCune currently works at Pittsburg State University in southeast Kansas. She is a native Kansan, and holds an M.F.A. in Poetry from Washington University in St. Louis (1991) and an M.L.S. from Emporia State University (2002). Her poems have been published previously in River Styx.

Julie Ramon is an English instructor at NEO A&M in Miami, Oklahoma.  She graduated with an M.F.A from Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky. Among writing, her interests include baking, sewing, traveling, and garage sales. She is also a co-organizer of a Joplin, Missouri poetry series, Downtown Poetry. She lives in Joplin with her husband, daughter, and sons.


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