April 27 – Claudia M. Reder

NPM Thorpe

Welcome to National Poetry Month and Gyroscope Review’s month-long celebration of poets – and their diverse Writing Assistants. Enjoy the audio/video works by previous Gyroscope Review poets and be sure to check out the Author and fun Writing Assistant Bio at the end of each NPM poet post. Don’t forget to tag the poet on Social Media and let them know you enjoyed their work!

Self-Portrait from the Future

Self-Portrait from the Future
Reach for my hand, I tell her, I will take care of you.
She doesn’t respond. She doesn’t yet know 
how long she will be ill, how a few days 
will grow into years, 
how a new normal will eventually develop.
It’s okay, I want her to know,
we will manage. But she is still reliving
that night, her eight-year-old padding 
out of her bedroom asking, “Mommy, are you alright?”
Her family follows the ambulance
to the hospital where she is taken
ahead of a knife stabbing
because vertigo is the worst.
Her daughter has Doritos for breakfast
and goes to school with orange hands,
but on that eve that bisected our lives from before and after
I wondered if I was dying
and if so how to make peace
when I found myself among a salty froth of seals.
The paramedics interrupted my reverie.
The seals receded.
Then one seal leveled his gaze,
his wrinkly nose nudging me to focus,
that seal black eye on which my eyes locked.
My breathing synchronized with his,
the water murmurs sliding up and back.

A stillness sang inside of me,
an intimate immensity.
I knew that art served a purpose.
I would create new songs.
The old ones would not do.

This poem was first published on Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, Ed. Christine Klocek-Lim 


On my desk I keep playthings. My art ball keeps my hands busy when I don’t know what to write. My art ball reminds me to be playful, it keeps changing shapes in my hand.

My art ball is colorful. I’ve always loved geometry, origami, and the shapes of things. I have several such toys, but this is my favorite right now. The wood is smooth and soothes when I touch it. And I can never make a mistake.  All mistakes are happy accidents.

Art Balls


Claudia M. Reder is the author of How to Disappear, a poetic memoir, (Blue Light Press). Uncertain Earth (Finishing Line Press), and My Father & Miro (winner of the Bright Hill Press Award).  How to Disappear was awarded first prize in the Pinnacle and Feathered Quill awards.  She was awarded the Charlotte Newberger Poetry Prize from Lilith Magazine, and two literary fellowships from the Pennsylvania Arts Council. She attended Millay Colony, NAPA Writer’s Conference and The Valley. Her poetry ms. Appointment with Worry was a finalist for the Inlandia Institute Hillary Gravendyk Prize. Her poetry ms. This Book is for Lettie was a finalist for the Changing Light Prize from Livingston Press.  She is working on two new manuscripts, MotherLoad and Dizzying Words. Previously she was a storyteller and poet in the schools in DE, NJ, and PA.  She taught at California State University at Channel Islands.



Don’t forget to read the Spring 2024 Issue of Gyroscope Review.

NPM 2024 Poets

April 1 – Cal Freeman

April 2 – Susanna Lang

April 3 – Marion Brown

April 4 – Melissa Huff

April 5 – Elaine Sorrentino

April 6 – Alison Stone

April 7 – Alexandra Fössinger

April 8 – Laurie Kuntz

April 9 – Dick Westheimer

April 10 – Wendy McVicker

April 11 – J.I. Kleinberg

April 12 – Ellen Austin-Li

April 13 – D. Dina Friedman

April 14 – Connie Post

April 15 – Georgina Key

April 16 – Judith McKenzie

April 17 – Jacqueline Jules

April 18 – Amanda Hayden

April 19 – Lisa Zimmerman

April 20 – Richard Jordan

April 21 – Beth Kanell

April 22 – Kari Gunter-Seymour

April 23 – Jane Edna Mohler

April 24 – Susan Cummins Miller

April 25 – Kathleen Wedl

April 26 – Judy Kronenfeld

April 27 – Claudia M. Reder