Thursday, April 30, 2015

Third-Place Winner: "Eyes Closed" by Jeanie Greensfelder

Jeanie Greensfelder, a psychologist and poet, is author of Biting the Apple, Penciled In, 2012, and Marriage and Other Leaps of Faith, Penciled In, 2015. She’s had a poem published on Writer’s Almanac and in American Life in Poetry. Her poems are in forthcoming anthologies: Pushing the Envelope: Epistolary Poems, Paris, and 30 Years of the San Luis Obispo Poetry Festival; in journals: Askew, Miramar, Orbis, Echoes, Grand, Kaleidoscope, Porter Gulch Review, Poetic Medicine Journal, Riptide, Falling Star, and If&When. She lives in San Luis Obispo, California. Her poems can be read at

Eyes Closed
by Jeanie Greensfelder

I visit a meditation group to learn 
what lures them here. Some sit 
on mats, others on chairs. A bell rings.

Silence begins. Inhale, exhale. I try
to quiet my thoughts: I’m hungry, restless 
and give in to my urge to peek:

I see faces with masks removed.
I’ve trespassed into the vulnerability 
hidden by open eyes.

Yesterday in the checkout aisle, a mother, 
carrying her infant, shared his sleeping face:
innocence, guilelessness—our paradise lost.

And here, for this half hour, people come,
sit, and enter that state. Now I’m hungry
to join them. I shut my eyes.

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