Summer Collections

Clare Hawkinson
BFA TX 2026

1. Never not writing to you
My mother goes 20 on our precious street
and I think you’d go 35
For richer for poorer but never for lunch
You’ve wailed on me
wading in rivers 8 ft deep
Fathers fingers tingle
like an itch you just can’t stop scratching
Singing bluegrass blues hey that’s where it’s at
Do bugs stay clear of you like I do?

All images by the author.

2. Dreaming up reunion
Spring turns me bitter
Forget the daughter, I remember your sharp tongue
No tongue no flick none of your petty tricks no lip slips

I will rhyme myself to sleep
Arrow, marrow, narrow, a sparrow
tired of biting down on that same bit
choking up orange over public storage
catching ice in bare hands

You force my hand in hand of Anger:
come now you, the closest
to a serious rebuke I’ve given yet

Parents putting me on the prayer chain
since it’s 1 year later 
still picking your hair out my fan
still putting out advertisements
for your pitiful objects

Dreaming up reunion each night
I will stay
plagued by prevention
these days

3. Thinking interlude
I just realized, I think I’m prophetic
cause that woman in the plaid
crossed herself leaving the store

Their robots get the Sunday off
for on the seventh day I keep
calling my folks up tell ’em how I knit so well today
Little do they know sailors mouth in this house

In the desert all I can think about are anchors
Anchorite, anchorhold, anchoress
pulls out her hair just to try and put it back

4. Calling out:
Come back to me gaptooth

Spiced pecans like an open bottle of wine
“How you” Say you can’t put them down but
I haven’t had any I’ve been so busy
driving you to this 90th Shindig

Panting in anxiety on the drive down
did you know -
Fan it with the scripture to cure
sweat dripping down the neck
The word will give you that sweet relief

Paddles make like drawings in the cattails
Doing circles with the carp

Daughter looks in on me as I sleep so I’ll tell them
her touch gave my cheeks this bacterial infection

It’s a little hot back here
to be off to pioneer
Sitting like a stone in his stomach
1 of 3 making eyes at the road

She holds my thumb now when I start to weep
Her arm instinct of saving grace
when she breaks too hard

and when she leaves behind
a cardboard scrap I will keep it since

after all this,
it’s the girl with the rosebuds who knows best,
calling out don’t be a stranger

5. How to build a bicoastal life
It is I, the first mistress!
If I’d stayed in California would you still love me now

Find a muse to replace the adjacent
for this period in time

On valentine’s I walked alone to see the cows
but at least I’m not to the point of
feigning anxiety to avoid the Amtrak fare
I am the light dust layer the sweet sigh the
late winter dusk

Now let me write of a solitary life where
words are consolation to me through this fever
For in the beginning was the word

We beg we borrow we kiss we say goodbye
until September

Clare Hawkinson is biting to the quick, biting too quick.