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Breath & Shadow

Fall 2017 - Vol. 14, Issue 4

"Leaving for University"

written by

Elaine G. Schwartz

There she stands

faded floral apron neatly tied

paring knife in her right hand

a yellow onion held firmly in the left

she peels it with great precision

golden skin falling to the kitchen counter

followed by layers of translucent flesh


Onion crescents slipping from her fingers

she mutters, onion tears

turns her back to me


Later, driving north on the old coast road,

I remember the onion

her hand grasping the slippery core

not letting go


First appeared in Malpais Review, 5 (2), Autumn, 2014.

Elaine G. Schwartz is a wife, mother, grandmother, former college instructor, social activist and co-founder of the Albuquerque Chapter of Poets Against War. Her work, best described as a tapestry of place and political imagination, has appeared in numerous publications including the Santa Fe Literary Review, Malpais Review and Sin Fronteras.

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