by Patrice M. Wilson
Salvation Army rings bells beside red kettles, a homeless man with dirty dreads trudges the sidewalk. I am closer to him than I imagine, the miles of distance created by lines invisible, but thick red like blood or the red of each fat Santa at every mall. I like to hope for him the best, Christmas lights in windows, a clean home— but I look around my too-small apartment where sits each year on makeshift box furniture covered by hand-hemmed cloth, a tiny artificial tree which I decorate with a long white string of false pearls.
From the chapbook On Neither Side by Patrice M. Wilson
Born Catholic in Newark NJ, raised in Catholic schools, Patrice M. Wilson has a PhD in English from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, having earned her MA there and her BA at the University of Maryland, College Park. She was editor of the very fine Hawaii Pacific Review for 16 years while teaching at Hawaii Pacific University. She has three chapbooks of poetry with Finishing Line Press, and one full-length poetry collection with Christian publisher eLectio Publishing. Dr. Wilson recently spent five years in the cloistered Carmelite monastery in Kaneohe, HI. She is now a retired professor living in Mililani, Oahu, HI.