“Pathos,” a poem by Cynthia Kolanowski.

“What others are able to see is maddening….”
Napoleon’s garden on Elba. Gunver Hasselbalch. Watercolor, 2016.


or something like it. The names of the flowers

in Hamlin, Pennsylvania. Each typeset

in Berkeley Old Style and printed

on separate sheets of acid-free paper.

The woman described her intentions as decorative.

Which meant words arranged

in vases, words pinned

to thin curtains. Some framed

and hung on walls, others

pressed into books.

They found her assembling a wreath.

“It’s the season,” she said. “I have to keep up

with these windows. What others

are able to see is maddening.”


Cynthia Kolanowski’s poems have appeared in CutBank, Portland Review, and Spinning Jenny.