Althaea walked through city street jungles
& discothèque forests like a water tiger
dancing away wiles, strutting precision;
marveling at possibilities, regaling in new things,
she latched on to novelty like a curious child
longing for the thrill of initial experiences
to linger & establish her past-perfect future
where she'd dwell in winter's pristine ice
beauty clothed in light, broad snowflakes;
a panthera overachiever, Althaea dallied in romance
warmed up to multiple partners, defied taboos, maintained
flexibility, explored the art of love without restrictions;
when mods wore polka dots, Athaea fancied stripes
communicating mystically, healing spiritually;
deceased, she strolls among us still. Stealthily. Unseen.
An award-winning Washington-based author, and educator, Sterling Warner's works have appeared literary magazines, journals, and anthologies including Trouvaille Review, Shot Glass Journal, Sparks Of Calliope, and The Fib Review. Warner's collections of poetry include Rags and Feathers, Without Wheels, Shadowcat, Edges, Memento Mori, Serpent's Tooth, and Flytraps: Poems (2022)-as well as Masques: Flash Fiction & Short Stories. Currently, Warner writes, participates in "virtual" poetry readings, and enjoys retirement in Washington.