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Tuesday, August 14, 2007


in January 2007

by Liane Ellison Norman

I really don't know why, she says.
A dozen kids make their own
posters to hold at the corner

of Forbes and Braddock
on a blustery day in the teens.
This corner's named for another

time, another war, when General
Braddock's forces failed to take
Fort Duquesne from General Forbes.

She's nearly seven, mover
and shaker. My teacher's son
is in the war. Now he's in

the hospital. Maybe, she thinks,
that's why. We're layered,
sweaters, parkas, hats, scarves,

mittens. More cars honk than
don't, thumbs up and the V
of first and second fingers,

the sign for peace. Hey, Mr.
President. We're out here
in the cold saying No.

Liane Ellison Norman won the Wisteria Prize in January 2007, awarded by Paper Journey Press, for her poem "What There'd Been." She has also published poems in the Madwomen in the Attic Anthology (2007), Pittsburgh Post Gazette and Pittsburgh City Paper. Her first book of poetry, The Duration of Grief, was published in 1990 by Smoke & Mirrors Press, which also published her novel, Stitches in Air: A Novel About Mozart's Mother (2001.) A biography, Hammer of Justice: Molly Rush and the Plowshares Eight (1990) and Simpleton Story: A Fairy Tale For a Nuclear Age (1985) were published by PPI Books. She has also published many essays, articles and reviews.