Origin Stories – Robbi Nester

Origin Stories
    Worst Fear
    by Robbi Nester

    Halfway through the revolving door 
    of prose, I see Poetry disappearing 
    into a crowd. It happens in the old 
    Wanamakers department store 
    on Market Street, in Philadelphia, 
    long since closed. While I am 
    stalled by the throng, she slips
    smoothly by, in her neat
    summer frock, and enters 
    the gilded elevator, where
    she stands, framed, for a second, 
    silent and composed, before 
    ascending forever out of my life.

    Previously published in Aeolian Harp Vol. 6 (Glass Lyre Press)

Origin Stories – Worst Fear

I wrote this poem during a painful period when I was unable to write poetry. I had been trying to expand on prose memoir pieces I had written in the past, trying to turn them into a full memoir. It didn’t work, but worse than that, I could not get my brain to switch back into poetry mode. This poem was my first successful effort to break free of that curse, which seemed to be the punishment of a spurned muse. The scene here is one out of my past, growing up in Philadelphia. At that time, Wanamakers’ department store was a place everyone passed through, arranging to meet friends below the store’s enormous statue of an eagle or at one of its organ concerts or other special events. As a small child, I ice skated on the tiny rink the store opened every Christmas season, stood before the show windows, with their elaborate winter scenes. As a teen and young adult, I spent many a summer day like the one described in this poem in this store, ducking out of the heat and humidity.

Gyroscope Review Spring 2023 Issue Now Available

Previous Origin Stories

April 1 – Wanda Praisner

April 2 – Howard Lieberman

April 3 – L. Shapley Bassen

April 4 – Sharon Scholl

April 5 – Stellasue Lee

April 6 – Jeanne DeLarm

April 7 – Virginia Smith

April 8 – Patricia Ware

April 9 – Mary Makofske

April 10 – Ann Wallace

April 11 – Jessica Purdy

April 12 – Lakshman Bulusu

April 13 – Kim Malinowski

April 14 – Anita Pulier

April 15 – Martha Bordwell

April 16 – Anastasia Walker

April 17 – Annette Sisson

April 18 – Shaheen Dil

April 19 – Claudia Reder

April 20 – Cathy Thwing

April 21 – Sarah Snyder

April 22 – Susan Barry-Schultz

April 23 – Laurie Kuntz

April 24 – Maryann Hurtt

April 25 – Yvonne Zipter

April 26 – Jess Parker

April 27thKelly Sargent

Previous NPM celebrations from Gyroscope Review

Let the Poet Speak! 2022

Promopalooza 2021

Poet of the Day 2020

Poets Read 2019

National Poetry Month Interview Series 2018

Book Links Party 2017

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