July 6, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

Daniel Arauz photo



Carrie Magness Radna




Is this now America



Thanks to the latest news,

my heart is flattened like a National flag,

folded over and over again,

its stars are still showing;


(don’t want to touch the ground,

don’t want to be burned,

I want to fly free and high,

but it’s never the right time)


Children are still separated from their parents (for profits),

their families just want a taste of freedom,

away from their insurmountable hardships.


Mr. President,

why are you making their lives harder?

When will they be reunited,

when the background checks and important forms have been filed?


Is this now America,

whitewashing immigrants?

Is this now America,

not owning up to our foibles and mistakes?


My heart is like a flag;

I want it to spread it out

and inspire everyone I see

oh say can you see


Thanks to those in charge,

our little lives are beginning

(not) to count,


(and with these stripes we are healed)

and we do feel the pain

while the marks remain invisible,







Independence Day 2018



I feel divorced from this country today,

but it’s this country’s anniversary.

I got to put on a brave face and wing it,

fake news and stupid leaders often cause me to lose it,


some well-seeded hope that things will turn out fine,

children will reunite with their parents, down the line

and the disturbed ones won’t find their guns, not today,

it’s supposed to be a good day—


My friend’s reading the Declaration of Independence out loud

at the corner of 235th and Johnson Ave.; he is nervous

and is making his wife crazy.

At least he’s not lazy

in showing his love for our country—

it’s celebrating its marriage with its people, after all—-


And I need some patriotic love today before I fall

jaded, despairing, and exhausted too,

before we are all through

with the recent bullshit

our country has gone through;

we just can’t quit.


We have to keep fighting and loving,

no matter what happens to us,

whether traffic clogs up streets, we keep moving,

walking proud, riding the bus,

crossing every border we set eyes upon,

discovering the world; let them come to us,

United as a whole family, anon

or fully vetted, from a plane, boat or bus—-


Every race, creed, sex, preference, gender or age,

this is our country,

let’s get engaged.






Carrie Magness Radna

Carrie Magness Radna is an archival audiovisual cataloger at the New York Public Library, a singer, a lyricist-songwriter, one-time food blogger (The Hungry Librarian, at http://hungrylibrarian.me) and a poet who loves to travel.

Her poems have previously appeared in the Oracular Tree, and will be published in Nomad’s Choir and Muddy River Poetry Review. She won third prize for “The tunnel” (category: Words on the Wall: All-Genre Prompt) at the 69th annual Philadelphia Writers’ Conference (2017), where she attended workshops taught by the renowned poets Yolanda Wisher and Chrys Tobey, and has hung out with the irresistible and irreverent Mad Poets of Philadelphia, headed by Eileen D’Angelo.

Born in Norman, Oklahoma, she is a member of the Greater New York Music Library Association (GNYMLA), and is a member/have read/workshopped for the New York Poetry Forum, Parkside Poets, Riverside Poets, Brownstone Poets and Nomad’s Choir. When she’s not performing classical choral works with Riverside Choral Society or New Year’s Eve performances with the New York Festival Singers, or writing art song lyrics with her choir buddies, or penning her own folk songs for her chorus’ cabarets, or traveling, she lives with her husband Rudolf in Manhattan.

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