In addition to teaching and research, Nicole Coonradt also writes poetry of extraordinary depth and concise expressivity. Here are two recent “Mini-Epics,” in which classic stories (with a twist, of course) are told with brevity and pointed wit.
CHILDREN OF AN IDLE BRAIN
I am sad Hephaesta, marked in the womb to limp
the world alone. Mocked or ignored, incapable
of even slavery, I am but a beggar
who lives in a cave in the hills beyond Athens.
I am nobody. But once I had a daughter,
wee foundling of the Agora, an outcast, too,
who was more precious to me than the gods can know.
[ . . . ]
FROG OF GOOD FORTUNE
He sat at his desk and worked—or tried to.
But he found it difficult to focus.
This was the norm recently since he had
been laid low by illness. He’d moved about
as in a fog, each day a bit less, while
he recovered; though “normal” felt distant.
But something was distinctly different now;
he had a feeling he was not alone
[ . . . ]
To read both poems in their entirety, go to Mini-Epic Poetry: Agency and Free-Will by Nicole Coonradt. They are brief but very satisfying. You’ll be happy to spend a little time with them.