Santa Rosa

“An Echo Drops In The Therapist’s Change Purse”, “Santa Rosa Is Calling” and “Earth Juice”

In Poetry by Megan LeAnne

An Echo Drops in the Therapist’s Change Purse

And the therapist says
tell me of your father

as if she hasn’t heard.

How he left but also
how he stayed.

in the pocket-slope of my nose &
in the midnight café flirt on a Tuesday &
in Greatest Hits from the 50s cassettes beneath my bed &
apparently in the waistbands of every nobody-Joe &
a 23-minute drive from my doorstep with his wife &

in the 18 other women she has spoken to this week
still smashing up mirrors trying to slice out the ghost of ‘em.


Santa Rosa Is Calling

The waitress stares at me
from inside the restaurant.

I am outside, trying
to remember how to say
“check, please,” in Spanish.

My whiteness and impatience
can’t roll its “r” the way it used to.
My whiteness and impatience
eats its dinner as if
rice and potatoes are as easy
as breathing.

I recall the feminine,
stumble over, “la cuenta, por favor.”
Stacatto V, darting eyes everywhere
but hers.

Whiteness hangs on me the way
I imagine America yanks on the teeth
of darker women.

The blushing, how it stings and
they call me cute when I am
uncomfortable. This must be
as close as I’ll ever feel to self-loathing:

outside this restaurant,
glowing and impatient, too embarrassed
to speak the native tongue.


Earth Juice

Old, freckle-battered woman
with the smell of baby toes hot
on her nose says placenta
and the children squeal, blush, wiggle
around in their seats.

Pigtailed girl calls it Earth juice
the sticky sleeve we butterfly from
pink bones and thin-skins preparing
to bloom.

The little boys yell nasty!
Knowing too much of a dead language
gnawing its nails in the coffin. The girls
smile and dream of motherhood

forget the blood and ballooning pelvis
think of bonnets and lullabies cradled
in a bucket.

The woman in the corner flashes
her eyes like breast milk at the boys,
a grin saying something more than happy
saying sweet innocence, just you wait.

About the Author

Megan LeAnne

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Megan LeAnne is a writer and teaching artist specializing in poetry and spoken word, prop performance, and movement arts. She currently resides in Nashville, TN and serves as a poet mentor for Southern Word, Nashville’s non-profit spreading literacy and performance skills through the vehicle of spoken word. Megan’s work has been featured in Calliope Magazine, MTSU’S Collage (winner best poem Fall 2016), Meat for Tea: The Valley Review, Rebelle Society, and Flowers Center. Find her online at meganleannesmith.com.