Kathleen Groll Connolly

Poems to Read


I rise to vistas on
streamside trails,
breathing the humid air
beloved of ferns.
I rise to rock that
denies trees their root holds,
closer to where the red-tail hawk
hovers on stationary thermals.
I rise to vistas on
mountains called
stepping stones
along the processional path
of monarchs
on their long aerial drift south.
I rise
to Connecticut vistas,
where cities, farms, highways, schools
splash their colors in the valleys below.

Finally to the dry air of power
and humility
wind wicks away the
damp warmth of a body exerted
by a good climb.

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(Published in Fall 2004, Connecticut Woodlands)

Memories of a Tree


I am all about memory,
about cyclical warmth that swells my limbs with growth,
and then takes the growth back again.
I am the buckets of rainfall and empty buckets,
the insects that flourish,
then die of the competition
from their own numbers.
I am all about the success of bees,
the hunger of birds,
the nesting of small animals.
I am about blazes that lick the ground
and grab the sky;
about wind-born particles
that settle on my leaves.
I am about soil,
that hiding place of busy subterranean cities.
I am about a place.
A location where people build,
don’t build,
build and tear down,
build and abandon.
I am all about withstanding,
all of it.
In my reach, my leaf, my shape, and bend, and fork,
I am the sum of memories.

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Published in Pisgah, a literary journal, in 2009.


The heart lives timeless at her open doors,
heedless of the weather.
Like a young one waiting for a mother,
who’s absent long past dinnertime.
Like a child listening for a front doorstep
that will softly signal,
“Father’s home.”
Time’s linear path rolls past the open door,
The young one transported
Its undeniable way
As she lives her vigil.
Her inner eye is perfectly young.
She sees only an endless lane where
Her expected miracle
Has yet to be sighted.

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(Honorable Mention, Brodine Poetry Contest, Connecticut Poetry Society, 2003)

Color Within The Lines

They didn't tell me
I'd be stuck at the grocery store
On my way to greatness.
They didn't tell me
The search for Rice Krispies
Would compete with life's major deadlines.
They didn't tell me
I'd have to experience transcendence
Waiting for take-out
No one mentioned:
The deepest expressions
Must take place
While pretending to color within the lines.

Where is that hidden weak point
In the bubble wrap around my life?
It's not at the grocery;
I've scoured the shelves.
It's not at the dry cleaner;
I've made the man
Spin the plastic bags
a hundred times.
It's not at the take-out counter.
I can't find it in the bag.
It's not at the traffic light.

Where is it,
the hidden flaw in the space-time continuum?
Keyhole to the universal mind,
Where the big thoughts are unlatched?
Where I soar at escape velocity,
Outdistancing that which makes me
color within the lines.

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Fall 2004, Long River Run II Anthology, Connecticut Poetry Society



"Kathy's poems sound like a zingly monologue about the wasteful and absurd aspects of modern life. At the root of them is her respect for Nature's order and beauty."
Christine Woodside, editor, Connecticut Woodlands Magazine, Appalachia Journal, and author of numerous environmental books and articles.

"Kathy's poetry is intelligent without being obscure -- it appeals to readers who want poetry to cause them to think and also to enable them to feel what is written." Gail Varney, editor, Inspirit

Poems Published

"Beach in Winter," Schuykill Valley Journal of the Arts, 2010

"At Chapman Falls," Poem (literary journal), 2009

"October Gardener," Poem, 2009, and Westview, 2009

"The Catch at Uncas Lake," ellipsis . . . literature and art, 2009

"The Farmer in Winter," Honorable Mention Inspirit Poetry Contest, 2009

"Another Email to God," Honorable Mention Inspirit Poetry Contest, 2009

"Memories of a Tree," Pisgah, 2009

"The Gardener's Pen," Meridian Anthology of Poetry, 2009

"Extra Acid," Rosebud, 2009

"Three Women Meet in Church," Inspirit, Summer 2008

"The Good Child," Inspirit, Summer 2008

"Pray," Inspirit, Summer 2007

"Light," Inspirit, Summer 2007

"Grocery Games" received 2nd place in the "Save Our Earth" contest of the National Federation of State Poetry Societies, May 2005

"Light" received an Honorable Mention in the Winchell Contest of the Connecticut Poetry Society, 2005

"I Used To Be a Lawn," Fall, 2005 Connecticut Woodlands

"Fragile Love," Connecticut Woodlands, January 2005

"Orbit," Carquinez Poetry Review, 2005

"Social Experiment" was read on National Public Radio's Themes & Variations, November, 2004

"Color Within the Lines," Long River Run II Anthology, Fall 2004, Connecticut Poetry Society

"Rise," Connecticut Woodlands, Fall 2004

"Timeless" received an Honorable Mention, Brodine Poetry Contest, Connecticut Poetry Society, 2003

"Walls in Woods" appeared in Connecticut Woodlands, July 2001