Tag Archives: poetry by Patricia Karamesines

Father-Daughter Dance by Patricia Karamesines

baroque staircase Amsterdam

(For Clinton F. Larson)

How long did I look in that face, admit
that voice? He left his door unlocked to me,
kept ice cream money in a drawer. He fit
his office to my urchin company.

Those years I spent his foundling, each day waking,
I toyed on his baroque and spiraled stair.
“Look, here is Milton. See this sentence snaking?
These coils bend on forever. Do you dare?”
Continue reading Father-Daughter Dance by Patricia Karamesines

Goat Paths by Patricia Karamesines


We are the Day Society:

See how we skirt surefooted as goats

the Crevasse of Desire.

God is in the well-placed step that bears us above Death,

while Beauty weeps for us beyond the goat paths.


By day, the way is clear, so complete,

the ground floor and ceiling blue.

We see where we are and name it alone and only.

On our tongue, world settles into a few words—

unanswered, unanswerable shouting.


Then sunset’s splinters—orange, mauve—

 fade to night’s raw transparency

and the first call of a star.


Perfect, calling silence, star following star

like deer stepping from shadow or heavy forest

into the dark’s open, stream-curled meadows.


Now we’re in sterner metaphor,

the embrace of the abyss,

brought by goat paths

to the brink of wilderness.


Patricia KaramesinesPatricia Karamesines has won numerous awards for her poetry, essays, and fiction, including awards from the University of Arizona, the Utah Arts Council, and the Utah Wilderness Association. She is the author of The Pictograph Murders (Signature Books 2004), an award-winning mystery novel set in the Four Corners area.  Her poetry appears in the anthology Fire in the Pasture (Peculiar Pages 2011).   She writes for the Mormon arts and culture blog A Motley Vision and runs the nature writing blog Wilderness Interface Zone that advocates for the “greening of human language”.  She has taught English classes at USU-Eastern off and on since 2006 and now tutors English students for the NASNTI Grant program–a job she dearly loves. She lives with her husband and three children a stone’s throw from beleaguered Recapture Canyon, has put in plenty of foot-time in the canyon, and is currently completing a work of creative nonfiction about her strange and wonderful experiences there.

The Mendicant’s Plea by Patricia Karamesines

800px-Waterdruppel_op_blad waterdrops on leaves public domain

If I came in the dawn, before
Your hard light and straight air,
If I brought a cup,
Would you let drop dew

From your luster onto its curve?
Not for me, mind you—
It’s enough for my two orbs
To reflect on complexions of sky-

Eyed beads, enough for my two
Shells to dote on strands
Of silence.  But others might
Not catch the muddy logic

Of rainstorm runoff, the smoke
Of wit in some animal eye,
The lavender twinkle
Of late-blooming asters;

Might not hear your dog’s
Cackle upend evening’s
Sequence, the raven break off
Night, the raw weed bend.

If it were a plain cup,
Without artistry,
Only your look, your lights
Dabbling its surface—

In each hemisphere of blessing
Would I bear out plenum on a mirror—
Your ascetic bent on prodigality,
Minims stamped with Everness’s twins.


Patricia and her husband, three kids, two cats, and new puppy live at the edge of the desert in the Four Corners region of the southwestern U.S.  She has won many awards for her poetry, essays, and fiction.  She is the author of The Pictograph Murders, a mystery set in the area where she now lives.  Some of her poetry appears in the recently published landmark anthology of Mormon poetry, Fire in the Pasture. An adjunct English professor for Utah State University-College of Eastern Utah, she teaches English composition and also provides tutoring instruction.  She is the founding editor of Wilderness Interface Zone.  “The Mendicant’s Plea” was first published in Desert Voices, the Moab Poets and Writers’ literary magazine.