Mother Cloud

This selection is part of NonBinary Review Issue #3: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. You can get NonBinary Review #3 at the Zoetic Press website. 

Aeolus releases a rock-blocked opening in his pre-Christian eight-sided condo. A warm breeze shoots through the conversion layer and hits high dry air. A pair of ups and downs mate in thirty minutes of passion and you arrive in a blond Kansas cornfield with a moist blue sky.

At night the Whirlpool Nebula, canes venatici swirls like Ajax in a shiny black Jacuzzi. Thunderheads surge toward the storm cellar where you assume the fetal position and clutch the stillpoint at the crown of your head. Hailstones big as Augean dung-balls drive fear home.

Yet—and yet—there she is, The Girl With The Cloak totally relaxed in the Cyclopean eye of the storm. She joins the supercell of bickering couples venting their overdrafts while the Mother Cloud spiraling above at 50 mph produces four warring elephant trunks trumpeting sonic fan fare. Each ropy vacuum moves in a separate direction, emerging and returning to the Mother with a cargo of human bodies, cows, trash cans, and mobile homes mobilized for the first time.

Meanwhile, the Wicked Witch of the West, who added another T to Wichita, bends over a muddy river and beats a confiscated tatter of the cloak on a rock:

I knock this rug upon the stone
to raise the wind in evil’s name.
It shall not die ’til I please again.

Annoyed by the slant rhyme, The Girl With The Cloak turns her into a Rotarian and sets her spinning off to Texas where tournedos are so common they eat them with A-1 sauce.

from The Girl With The Cloak (Collection in Progress)


NBR4OlderphotosmallJulia Older won a National Outdoor Book “Classic” Award for Appalachian Odyssey, a memoir of her 2000-mile hike of the Appalachian trail, and currently is writing the final novel of The Isles Of Shoals Trilogy. Four of Older’s eleven poetry collections are booklength poems, including the IPPY National Bronze Poetry Medalist Tahirih Unveiled, about Persia’s first women’s rights activist, and Tales Of The François Vase, based on real 25-century Greek vase, accompanied by a CD of her award-winning NPR verse drama (Hobblebush Books Granite State Poetry Series).