Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2012 v11n1

The Wynona Poems

spacer    Down and Out audio
   A Scene Not Made audio
   A Christmas Story audio
   Isobars audio
   Human Resources audio
   Wynona’s Hiatus audio
   Hibernaculum audio
   Self-Checkout audio
   Deleted Scenes audio

This group of poems is part of a full-length manuscript, tentatively titled Welcome to Wynona, which centers on a woman named Wynona Stone and various characters from her life, including her family (referred to as “the Stones”), her dead friend Nancy, her cosmetologist, and the local weatherman. 

“Wynona Stone is having trouble broaching”: each of the manuscript’s three sections begins with this line. Between her job (she’s an interpreter at a small-town heritage museum) and family, her fixations and obligations, Wynona can’t seem to get a handle on the present tense. Often at odds with the people around her, in her free time Wynona watches soap operas and makes miniature clay models, staging scenes from her life. Though this is not the hobby of a totally sane person, the models offer Wynona an outlet for memory and desire—and a more manageable scale. As one poem puts it, “With so much much / Wynona wishes she could just adjust / the magnitude.” Writing poems, I feel the same way sometimes: that’s why I made her.