Saturday, July 24, 2004


by Loren Kleinman

The cheese is born: Mozzarella di Bufala,
Erborinati de Pecora, Pecorino Toscano.

A soft Robiola ripens in a leaf. A Caciocavallo Podolico
ages in the grottoes. The cheese should reflect

the diet of the animal from which it was birthed,
the sea salt rubbed on its crust, the stone grotto beside the dairy,

the hands of the women who shape it -
these signoras, how they watch the milk and rennet

heat over an open fire, how they scoop the gentle white curds
into molds and softly press out the whey with their palms.

These cheeses are alive, given an origin by the affinatore.
They are given a soul. Their lives are shaped from the beginning,

turned out of their molds, some taken from the ground,
hung from thick ropes - to break apart, grate over

broccoli rabe and orecchiette. Locals eat it as is -
no pepper, vinegar, or oil. It is a test of faith.


by Loren Kleinman

Tomorrow you will be in another country.
I do not know if the moon sleeps there,
how it will divide you between here and there,
yes and no, stay and go. How it will want to live inside of you.
Like I do. This moon. How it will hang over your body.
Keep you captive. You will want it to leave you alone
and you will want it to stay, to say your name before mine.
You will try to sleep, but you think of the place you were born,
your dead mother, your father, your uncles.
The night will show you its face, how you will remember
our faces, kept awake, whispering over and over:
I am never going to forget you. You will remember
the poems, how I read to you, how I turned to you:
this is for you, this opening.

Loren Kleinman's work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Journal of New Jersey Poets, Upstage, Poetry Motel, Promise Magazine, Split Shot: A Journal of Literary Art, Hipnosis: New Jersey's Art and Entertainment Magazine, Aspirations: The Art of Writing, The M.A.G, Sol Magazine, Conception, Karawane, In Other Words, and Destination Anywhere, as well as other journals and anthologies. She has been a featured poet at Ramapo College for Women's History Month, The Bowery Poetry Club, The Nuyorican Poets Café, and more. Kleinman was nominated for the 2000 Pushcart Prize (best of the small presses), for her manuscript, Up, Down, Sideways, and Across; and the 2003 Pushcart Prize for her poem “Cooking in Tongues.” Her book, Flamenco Sketches, was the winner of the 2002 Spire Press Poetry Prize. She is currently working on her next collection I Want No Paradise and is the Poetry/Reviews Assistant Editor for Sidereality.


I'm interested in considering your "poems of place" for publication in The Middlewesterner's "Saturday's Poem" feature; send two or three of your best in the body of an e-mail addressed to . Put "Saturday's Poem" in the subject line. Then be patient. I will get back to you about whether I'll use your work or not. Send along a short biographical note and information about where your books can be purchased and I'll include that when your poem runs. There's no payment involved for having your work appear in "Saturday's Poem," but the feature is seen by some high class readers. About seventeen of them, by our current count.

o Dave Bonta, "The Morning Porch" -
March 13, 2004
o Harriet Brown, "Speaking Midwestern" and "Where We Went" -
July 10, 2004
o Robin Chapman, "By the Wisconsin River" -
June 12, 2004
o Susan Firer, "The Butterfly Graveyard" - May 22, 2004
o Fred First, "In Living Memory" -
April 3, 2004
o R. Chris Halla, "My Prairie Wedding" -
June 5, 2004
o Mike O'Connell, "Flatlanders" and "A Farm and a Rainbow" - March 27, 2004
o Colleen Redman, "Tincture Making" -
May 15, 2004
o Jim Reese, "Ritual" and "Willing and Ready" -
May 29, 2004
o Robert Schuler, "Thaw, 2003, Stanton Township" and "The American Millenium" -
June 26, 2004
o Judith Strasser, "Apostle Islands History" and "County Road" - July 17, 2004

o Marilyn Taylor, "Surveying the Damage" - June 19, 2004
o Mark Vinz, "The Old Hometown" and "Midcontinent" -
April 17, 2004
o Complete index to poems here

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