Sandi Stromberg: Forecast
On stormy relationships and the poetry of love
A storm brews outside these windows,
but it’s hard to know if love will come.
Its appearance is as unpredictable
as scattered showers, and perhaps you prefer
a long dry spell to frenetic activity,
the twenty questions it hurls at your heart,
the ones your mind thinks it should answer.
You watch clouds accumulate and darken
and when he stands before your desk, you look
past him, tempted as you eye your umbrella.
But you’re clear. You don’t want
a flashy cloudburst. You would exchange
late summer monsoons for the soft sound
of drops on the roof and the smell of spring.
Sandi Stromberg on the poetry of love
A lot of your poetry seems to be about places, why write a love poem this time?
When I wrote this poem, I was on the cusp of a new relationship after the demise of a long marriage and no longer knew if I could trust myself or someone else.
Do you wonder how people might feel when they read your poetry?
I write accessible poetry, which I hope people can identify with. I want my “specifics” to speak to the “universal” so that others can enter the poem, reliving or reminded of their own experience.
Do you have a favorite love poem?
Not really. Being someone who is drawn to the dark, love poems have seldom spoken to me.
How about a breakup poem?
Marianne Boruch, “The Park in November” from Grace, Fallen from
In the digital collaboration The Lover’s Eye, one of the characters hears your poem being read on the radio in rural Wisconsin. Do you think it’s far-fetched? Should there be more poetry on the radio?
No, I don’t think it’s far-fetched these days. If, by far-fetched, you mean subject matter, I think the break-up of marriages is increasingly the norm, and the forming of new relationships daunting. If you mean, hearing poetry in a remote location: There’s more poetry read on the radio, for example Garrison Keillor’s “The Writer’s Almanac,” than in many past years. There could still be more. I think it’s good for the soul, especially since most people listen to the radio in their cars. It might calm and re-center the world.
Sandi Stromberg is an award-winning magazine feature writer and editor, as well as a poet. As a poet, she has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and published in many small print and online journals and anthologies. As a journalist, she published more than 400 magazine features in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Her translations of Dutch poetry have been published in the United States and Europe. Forecast was first published in Sol Magazine in 2008. In 2015, Sandi guest-edited Untameable City: Poems on the Nature of Houston — Mutabilis Press . This article is part of The Lover’s Eye,a digital collaboration for the 2016 winter workshop of Women in Visual and Literary Arts: Taming the Digital Beast.
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