“The Pie Lady” by Lowell Jaeger

26 March 2021 on Poetry   Tags:

Her pie wagon steamed early mornings
— far end of the fairgrounds —
with smells of home-baked sweets.

She chose me, of all the ride-jockeys,
to drive with her for sacks of flour
and crates of apples she could have managed
easily on her own. And we’d ride laughing,
two carnies shoved up in tight spaces,
each of us urgent and restrained, flirting
with complicated outcomes.

I was just a boy, mostly, back then.
Saved up wages and bought new jeans.
Ruined them first day with a smear of axel grease
across my thigh. Upon which the Pie Lady
gladly set to scrubbing me with a wet rag
and her own brand of miracle problem solver.
She worked and worked, unstaining me

while the fireworks boomed above.
Take ‘em off, she said, and I did.
While pies in the oven bubbled over
with unforgettable sweetness and joy.

"Blue Pen Drawing 1" by Jean Wolff. Ink on Paper.

Lowell Jaeger (Montana Poet Laureate 2017-2019) is founding editor of Many Voices Press and recently edited New Poets of the American West, an anthology of poets from eleven western states. Jaeger is a graduate of the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, winner of the Grolier Poetry Peace Prize, and recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Montana Arts Council. He was awarded the Montana Governor’s Humanities Award for his work in promoting civil civic discourse.

Jean Wolff has had group and solo exhibits in various galleries in New York City and internationally.  In addition, she has published 109 works in 72 issues of 48 different magazines. Born in Detroit, Michigan, she studied fine arts at the Center for Creative Studies in Detroit and at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, receiving a BFA in studio arts. She then attended Hunter College, CUNY in New York, graduating with an MFA in painting and printmaking. She is now part of the artistic community of Westbeth in Manhattan. 

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