Such Nonsense Indoors poems by Cora M. Ekwurtzel

picture of Cora Ekwurtzel
Photograph by Rennie McQuilkin  

Written in a style that is straightforward and conversational, with an eye that captures every nuance and with a wit that doesn’t suffer foolishness, Cora Ekwurtzel's first book, Such Nonsense Indoors, is a lyrical and spritely joy. Luanne Rice comments that “ Cora Ekwurtzel has written extraordinary poems about the metaphysics of ordinary life.”   She goes on to say that the poet “sees the world in slants of light that illuminate secrets and magic, that transform the familiar into the rare.  Her poems about nature are spare and elegant; she invites us into the spaces where the known gives way to the mysterious, where consciousness dissolves to dreams. Invoking a sense of small town myth, she reveals boundless curiosity and deep love for the life she leads, the landscape she so closely observes.  This is a stunning book.”
  such nonsense indoors cover image
  Photograph by Cheryl Picard

Cora Ekwurtzel grew up in Massachusetts and moved to a farm in Granby, Connecticut, where she raised her family and still lives with her husband, Steve. In the summer, you will pass her on the road bicycling to Congamond Lake for a swim or boating. In the winter, you will find her ice skating or cozied up, reading a slim volume of poetry by the fire. She has a motorcycle license, a boating license and a nursing license. An avid gardener, she wrote her first poem when inspired by picking ripe tomatoes in the hot August sun. Her engagement with the world of nature is often reflected in her poetry.  A lightning strike annealed her, and she tells the story with humor, amazement and gratitude for life.

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ISBN 978-1-943826-28-5

First Edition 2017

5.5" x 8.5" paperback, 68 pages

This book can be ordered from all bookstores, including Amazon.



Copyright © 2017 by Cora M. Ekwurtzel




I wanted a dog.
I got a white mouse
that ran on a noisy wheel
night and day.

I wanted to walk a red dog.
I got a mouse that gave me the creeps
with pink eyes and pink feet.

I wanted a dog with a lolling tongue.
I got a silent, nervous, sniffing rodent
that lived in a glass box.

I wanted a dog to give me the paw.
I got a white mouse
that crept all over me,
like it was doing something wrong.

I wanted a dog to hug and befriend.
I got a mouse that climbed up
one arm and down the other.

I wanted to rest my head on a red dog.
I needed to rest my head on a red dog.
A puny white mouse was
no substitute.

Rod and Reel


At night, we sat
at the round kitchen table,
the wood protected by yesterday's news.

We chatted as you set upon
repairing rod and reel,
its mechanism seized by salt and neglect.

Your fingers, grease-stained and familiar
with the choreography of repair,
moved lightly, constantly from tool to task.

I fed you grapefruit,
carefully deveined, pink and succulent,
from the blade of a bone-handled knife.

The Bell


The brass handbell
with a black wooden handle
sat silent on the desk for years,

ignored and dust-covered with cobwebs.
How many times had I passed it by
without noticing its graceful line,
its smooth-turned handle and heft?

So, I picked it up.
And when overturned,
its fig-shaped clapper clanged,
awakening something within me.

I stepped outside and lifted the bell
and rang until my ears stung
from the surge of its sound.

And when my arm ached,
I pumped with the other,
and I pumped and pumped and banged out
a glorious, galloping brass beat.

High over my head, I rang the brass bell
and listened to its pure, clean sound
and felt it pierce and resonate within my breast
until I stood shaking and breathless,
exuberant and exhilarated by my hand
and this once-dormant instrument.

For Good


Summer is like a bad boyfriend.
He rides in on the slipstream of spring
and warms you, burnishes your skin,
temporarily blinds you
and you become silly with heat.

Oh yes, your blossoms open.
Oh yes, your senses ignite.
Oh yes, when the corn ripens
you sleep naked, stripped of every convention,
the gauze of modesty lifted.

And then he gives an early sign,
the days shorten, here and there a leaf turns red.
Desperate to keep him, you cling tighter
and beg, shameless, frantic for possession.
But, Autumn has already claimed him
and turned his gaze for good.

Crab Grass


Recently, I heard that crab grass
does not propagate like the others.

The flat, sharp spears themselves
 when sliced by the lawnmower blade.

Fresh clippings burst across the yard
and settle in,
infuriating every green-carpeted suburbanite.

Cheers for Crab Grass
who is not outdone
by chemicals, machinery, or spite!

The Hawk


I am the hawk
who alone flies high,
my silhouette a mere speck
soaring in blue,
my dizzy, feathered flight
hollow-boned and effortless.

I am the hawk
who alone flies low,
circling bare branches,
searching for what fulfills
and what sustains
a restless spirit.

I am the hawk
who alone is perched
on a strong tree branch,
contemplating the cold river water
that flows, cresting between steep banks.

I am a patient sentinel,
unobtrusively observing,
silently gathering wisdom
from what passes below.