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[Poetry] Two Poems by Courtney Moody

That Florida Rhythm

My boss compares Florida a lot.

She places it beside Massachusetts,

says it’s the only place she’s lived

where people take a 3-hour lunch,

dogs bark after the postman leaves,

and lovebug wings beat in adagios—

and maybe it’s true that

our lips smack to the ocean’s metronome,

and maybe it’s true that

our sweat crawls like snails down spines,

and maybe it’s true that

I-4 stops for drivers to nap in the sunheat.

Well boss, continue the conference-call:

I think I’ll blackout the camera,

take a canoe and my paddle, and

leave the phone in the car-oven.

I can speak this river’s language,

let the flow and mullet-fish braid

me through mangroves and sunlight.

Tidal Tragedy

The ocean reaches for its dreams and

climbs out two centimeters short.

Hear it groaning for a horizon

that keeps its back turned to tangled foam.

The ocean reaches and crawls and scratches

now four centimeters too short.

Like a metronome

running on year-old batteries,

it can never keep time

or distance—only reach

and fall and reach again for the buildings and

people that will never touch

its edges.

Courtney Moody is Tampa Bay poet and Honor Medallion graduate of the University of Central Florida. In 2022, her poem "Florida Anatomy" was awarded second place for the Florida State Poet's Association Award. Her work can be found in various literary journals and anthologies, such as Calla Press, The Wave, and Capsule Stories’ Starry Nights.


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