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Simple Ways

25 April, 2016: Simple Ways


by Lori Ann Kusterbeck

Simple Ways

he said it in the simplest way possible
just a few words
a dusting of confectioners’ sugar upon the page
he picked
every syllable
with precision
assembling them together
like notes on a staff
a place
a syncopated rhythm for each one
he beautifully broke every beat and meter
like a host breaking bread at his table
   not a crumb wasted
   not a word misplaced
   not a pause or a breath untimely
   not a crust of content misused or erased
he found his literary path
uncluttered with clich├ęs
he chose
the less beaten path
his poems gently kneaded
artfully composed
folded over and then exposed
a much simpler way
“Simple Ways” by Lori Ann Kusterbeck from Hessler Street Fair Anthology 2015. Crisis Chronicles Press, 2015. Used by permission of the author.
Lori Ann Kusterbeck’s first poem was published at age 12. As a teen, she had over a dozen poems featured in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Her first chapbook Back\words & For/words was published by the Poet’s Haven Press, 2013. Most recently, she took home Second place in the 2015 Hessler Street Fair poetry contest. Residing in Cleveland, she holds an MA in Philosophy and teaches college classes in philosophy and humanities. To read more of her work and to view her catalog of published pieces, visit her website.



Compose a poem to be delivered orally to someone who took something from you, such as your chair at an event, your good name, or an object that was actually stolen from you.

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READ + WRITE: 30 Days of Poetry is a collaboration between Cuyahoga County Public Library and poet Diane Kendig. Our thanks go to Diane and the poets of Northeast Ohio who allowed us to share their poetry.