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Poems & Other Works

A Note to Readers - March, 2024


Below are links to several of my published poems. First, a word about the anthologies where my poetry has appeared.


No Season for Silence - Texas Poets and Pandemic, edited by
Milton Jordan, was published in 2020 (Kallisto Gaia Press,
Austin). In this volume, nine Texas poets reflect on the fears and
courage, the semi-isolation, the limited mobility and other
experiences of that difficult time.


Upon publication, first responders, medical professionals, and
community volunteers, who sacrificed to help others through the
ordeal, were given copies of the anthology in heartfelt thanks.


The Dead Pets Poetry Anthology (Transcendent Zero Press,
Houston, 2023), edited by Damian Ward Hey and Rick C.
Christiansen. In this volume, 70 poets pay tribute to beloved pets–
integral parts of our families and our lives– that we have loved and
lost over time.


All profits from the sale of this anthology are donated to animal
welfare charity.


Lone Star Poetry - Championing Texas Verse, Community, and
Hunger Relief 

(Kallisto Gaia Press, Austin, 2023). In this volume, Editors
Laurence Musgrove and Milton Jordan bring together a selection of
poems published in 2021 by Texas Poetry Assignment, an online
journal established to inspire community through poetry and
hunger relief.


A portion of the proceeds from each copy sold is donated to the
Feeding Texas hunger relief program.

 

A Time and a Time....


I believe I knew long before I completed the final draft of
Aftermath, that this, my eighth novel, would be my last one.


Even though I was far from ready to give up writing, I felt that,
over 40 years, I had probably written everything original that I was
capable of writing as a novelist; and I no longer wished to
undertake the years of research followed by years of writing, then
the long process of publication, required of a novelist. It was time
to focus my creative energies on a new challenge.


Fortunate for me, writing poetry would prove as deeply rewarding
as writing novels. I had been composing poems for years, and
often my poems found their way into my fiction. Finally, in
Aftermath, the narrator eventually becomes a poet, spurred by a
high school classroom assignment that sends a thrill through her
soul, and gives her the words to articulate her feelings about the
tragedy that changed her life forever, when she was 12 years old.


Poems attributed to the character Delys Lithingate appear in
several places in Aftermath, and an additional 16 poems follow the
story's closing.


While my novels have always been character-driven, they are
marked by a wide variety of settings and situations and time
frames. My poems can probably be described in this way as well.
Some spring from indelible memories of childhood or experiences
affecting me deeply in adulthood; some are inspired by works of art
I find arresting, or stories in the news that are provocative.

 

Here is the link to a recent interview by Angelo State University
student Katie Carpenter, in a graduate English course on literary
publishing and editing, taught by Laurence Musgrove:

 

https://www.texaspoetryassignment.org/interviews/all-instinct-
then-revise-revise-
revise-the-suzanne-morris-interview

 

Links to some of my published poems can be found below in
this website along with explanations of how each poem came to
be. I will be updating this section several times a year.

 

"A time and a time..." my friend and mentor, the late Rega
McCarty, used to muse during her creative writing workshop.
These words of wisdom have stayed with me in the years since.
There was a time for writing novels; and now is a time for writing
poetry. I am fortunate to have experienced both, and I appreciate
the support and encouragement from readers that I have received
along the way.

 

Suzanne Morris

2024


Letter from Sunnyside


This poem was inspired by the memory of a visit with Susan

Schwartz, my Doubleday book editor, one autumn in the mid-
1970's. We took a side trip from Manhattan to visit the historic

home museum of the famed storyteller Washington Irving in
Tarrytown. It was a magical time in our lives, shortly after my first
novel GALVESTON, was published. Irving's famous story, The
Legend of Sleepy Hollow, plays an important role in the poem.


https://www.texaspoetryassignment.org/texas-letters/letter-from-sunnyside


After Words

 

The famed poets Jane Kenyon and Donald Hall are two of my all-
time favorites. The legendary story of their love and marriage, and

the way each inspired the other in their creative lives, captured my
imagination and sparked this poem. Jane Kenyon died tragically in
her forties, and Donald Hall mourned her loss for the rest of his
life.


https://stonepoetryjournal.com/suzanne-morris-2/


The Ballet Dancers of Ukraine


Stories of the valiant struggle by the Ukrainian people to defend
themselves, and the sovereignty of their country, against Russian
aggression, have flooded international news for two years and
more. I have been moved to write several poems on the subject,
which have been published in various journals. Here is a link to
one. Others will follow as I update this list.

 

https://newversenews.blogspot.com/2023/08/the-ballet-dancers-of-
ukraine.html?m=1

 

Bewildered


I was disconcerted to learn, several years ago, that the home where
I grew up, in Houston's Idylwood neighborhood, was to be

drastically renovated and transformed from the modest two-
bedroom, one-bath brick cottage I remembered into a formidable

two-story home that crowds the small lot on which my father built
it. Naturally, as I watched the transformation take place, I found
myself writing a poem.


https://stonepoetryjournal.com/suzanne-morris/


Two Halves of a Whole


Growing older, I find myself reflecting more and more on my
upbringing in the 1950's. The two parts of this poem about my

parents were written separately, at different times, and later joined
for publication as one. Each part encapsulates an impression of the
separate personalities of Ruth and Frank Page, and what it was like
growing up in the atmosphere they created for my sister and me.


https://www.texaspoetryassignment.org/texas-odes/two-halves-of-a-whole

The Dead Pets Poetry Anthology