Terry Lowenstein — Six Poems

generational parallels

ubiquitous ads
document a trend
borne of popularity
sold to the masses
the celebrity faced crowd
toted benifits, suppliers competed
with colorful packaging, sweet deals
a match that blazed across years
even when whispers surfaced
that risks were hidden
in the cloud of smoke
filtered news in time
gave way to facts now
no longer challenged
at the intersection
of headlines yet to be
begs the question
is the cell phone
the cigarette
of today’s generation

verbal expression

traffic snarled
vehicles swerve
language explodes
as tires squeal
horns sound
and a finger raises

just another commute
flavored with the compulsion
of shared language
jittered nerves
a jumble of accents
and accidents

Please Come

The invitation verbal and adamant.
I wavered unsure, my husband was far
from thrilled, but was persuaded to go.

Traffic was heavy, the trip long,
it was hot, the Volvo’s air struggled.

The real ordeal was yet ahead.
The black sheep of the family
home for her sister’s wedding.

Which explains why

the reception was frigid

despite the broken a/c.

passengers metropolis bound

(written after visiting washington, d.c.)

somber attire
the unspoken uniform
shades of black

obsidian, atramentous, murky

the physiognomy of commuters
mirrors their outward apparel

I search for a splash of color
a glimpse of individuality
but it is not there

it is absent from the faces
of those who call this home


color is left for the tourists
visiting school children,
you and I

we stand out
from the masses

refusing to slip
on veneer masks

but if we called this home

would the color
bleed from our lives

and a cicadian shell
be all that remained of voices
that once sang out

reflections on artistic inspiration gone awry

it seemed like a good idea
water pistols in hand
paint secured
the mischief was done

but the gratification found
was soon replaced by pain
parental disapproval exhibited
in punishment that followed

clean up was a chore
not quickly forgotten
yet years later the episode
brings peals of laughter

as brothers recall tales of mischief
and the look on the mayor’s face
when he discovered
they’d painted the town blue

Mannequin Envy

A young woman paused and gazed

at the haute couture displayed.

The idea of trying on dresses beyond

the power of fairy godmothers took root.

The shop door announced her arrival.

Her footsteps brought a smiling attendant.

And, for a time, a whim was indulged.

Alluding sophistication, elegance, savoir-faire,
styles classic and modern rested on padded hangers.
Mozart played softly, muting pedestrian sounds.

Mannequins shimmered with fairy dust.

Their fabrics hinted of exotic ports,

skilled seamstresses, talented couturiers.

Soon, a wall of mirrors reflected

the changes a well-made gown makes.
Never mind that the cost was beyond
the amount held in the small purse.

Indulging in fantasy, exquisite gowns

were tried on and a parade of outfits

promenaded before the gilded mirrors.

Alas, the clock did not strike

but reality chimed the passage of time

too soon Birkenstocks replaced glass slippers.

Sensual fabrics returned to closet confinement

and the proprietor sighed at the disappointment

of simple pumpkin normalcy and un-enchanted mice.


the fountain of youth waits no more

eternity has been bottled


liquid gold

night magic



all wait for purchase


rare rubies


need only be uncorked





ponce de leon

rolls in his grave

and laments a discovery

time refused