Born in Norman, Oklahoma, Carrie Magness Radna is a cataloger at the New York Public Library, a singer, a lyricist-songwriter, and a poet who loves to travel. Her poems have previously appeared in the Oracular Tree, Tuck Magazine, Muddy River Poetry Review, First Literary Review-East, Mediterranean Poetry, Shot Glass Journal and The Poetic Bond VIII, and will be published in Nomad’s Choir, Polarity E-Magazine and Cosmographia’s “The spirit, it travels: an anthology of transcendent poetry” (July 2019). She won 12th prize of the 2018 Writer’s Digest Poetry Awards for “Lily (no. 48 of Women’s names sensual series),” and 3rd prize for “The tunnel” (category: Words on the Wall: All-Genre Prompt) at the 69th annual Philadelphia Writers’ Conference (2017). Her first chapbook, Conversations with dead composers at Carnegie Hall (Flutter Press) was published in January 2019, and Remembering you as I go walking (Boxwood Star Press) will be published later in 2019. She lives with her husband Rudolf in Manhattan.
Afternoon tonic (African streets in Florence)
If a tonic could be made
from the afternoon
I got lost in Florence’s streets,
discovering a hamlet
seeing children laughing on roofs,
Ethiopian fruit-sellers arguing &
haggling in brightly-colored clothes
and other Africans conversing in
French in outdoor cafes.
I got lost there, but I found
adventure & exuberance
for a while—
I want a drop of that afternoon
to cool me down when hot,
to warm me up when cold,
to stir up my gumption
when boredom sets in—
My happy hour Frappuccino
has chocolate and coffee in it,
with some caramel notes,
sweetening the afternoon.
This tonic helps me now
when the kids come in from school;
now I feel awake & alive again,
and I dream of Firenze,
its cobbled streets,
and its African people
setting the afternoon on fire.
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Poetry in this post: © Carrie Magness Radna
Published with the permission of Carrie Magness Radna