Green Hills Literary Lantern




Manasota Key


I’ll go back to see the ospreys glide

low over the warm, green waves,

dig toes in the amber sand

made of flecks of shells,

each a recognizable, broken part

of what it was. I’ll lift up coquinas

from where they are buried.

They’ll push against the beds

of my palms on the way to where

they want to go. I’ll listen

to the sea grapes rustle,

lashed by a downpour, the air

freshened by fierce wind.

In the water, I’ll feel the rough

surface of sand dollars,

the brush of a skate swimming

at right angles just behind a school

of needlefish. I’ll go to where the sun

sets like a fiery egg bursting against

the rim of the world.


To the Mice


They live in their city on the other side of the baseboard.

I wonder if they also want to move,

feel they have approached the end of possibilities

in the crawlspace, imagine what a life

they might make in the center of the kitchen,

should the cabinets swing wide,

offering up the oat flour, beans, and rice.


The remorseless routine. Thunder of a derailed terrier

barking through thin wood, the poisoned

lures and accustomed, severe traps.

A channel up the soil pipe where under

the second-floor dots of bright wink,

as a remote sun tracks across the planks of wood.





Caroline Maun is the Chair of English at Wayne State University in Detroit. Her poetry publications include the volumes The Sleeping (Marick Press, 2006), What Remains (Main Street Rag, 2013), and three chapbooks, Cures and Poisons and Greatest Hits, both published by Puddinghouse Press, and Accident, published in 2019 by Alice Greene & Co.