Now Ada's tenants are crack head squatters
and scrawny rats, their teeth clicking, tapping
wires day and night. As though they are rented
to Ashkenazi ghosts, she stuffs empty apartments
with tables and chairs she scrounges from gutters.
On bloodless New York days, she cinches
her father's overcoat about her waist.
Her grey hair matted under her wool cap,
wispy curls unfurling, she screams at the vermin
on her stoop, "You fuckin' scum, get off my property."
I implore her to sell, to find safer ground
but she'd rather linger by a table at St. Ephraim's,
where the brown-gowned, sandaled priests--
men she thinks odd for choosing a celibate life--
ladle the chicken and spinach onto her plate.
second poetry manuscript, A Secret of Long Life, which is seeking a publisher, was nominated for the Robert McGovern Prize.Her first poetry collection, They Abide, was published by March Street Press. A five-time Pushcart nominee and winner of The Best of the Web, she has also won an established artist fellowship in poetry and two honorable mentions in prose from the Delaware Division of the Arts. She recently won The Nassau Prize for prose. Liz serves on the poetry board of Philadelphia Stories.