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Ode to My Maiden Name
Shoshauna Shy


(On the Eve of Our 40th Anniversary)

 I saw my next surname
in black felt pen printed
on a cardboard box at the foot
of a stairwell in a rickety
rental house, wondered if
it were pronounced Schy Schee
Schay Skay Ski Sky
and tried
to sound out the consonants
and the mystery of what
they did to the vowels as
I watched the handsome
engineering student
in suéde moccasins
crouch to heft and lug
that box up the stairs
and I knew I'd be content
with any one of those

© by Shoshauna Shy.
Used with the author's permission.

Shoshauna Shy began writing at the age of eight, was recruited by a muse in her early 40s and, since then, has since published five poetry collections and a wealth of award-winning fiction and nonfiction. Her poetry has been studied in classrooms, recited in church sermons, translated into Chinese, discussed by book clubs, made into videos, and produced inside taxi cabs and on the backside of city buses. Not a monogamous writer, Shoshauna works on as many as 7-11 projects at a time. The founder of Poetry Jumps Off the Shelf, she lives in Madison, Wisconsin.


Post New Comment:
Shoshauna Shy:
Thank you, everyone. My married name is "Schey" and pronounced "Shy," so I spell it "Shy" in my literary life to avoid having to correct hosts when I walk up to a podium.
Posted 02/14/2024 08:22 PM
Lori Levy:
A unique love poem.
Posted 02/14/2024 12:54 PM
Sharon Waller Knutson:
Purrfect Valentine's Day gift from one of my favorite poets. Shoshauna always finds the perfect nouns, vowels and consonants to spell LOVE.
Posted 02/14/2024 12:38 PM
Lovely. And a perfect fit with Shoshauna.
Posted 02/14/2024 12:23 PM
Wilda Morris:
Fun poem. Good love poem.
Posted 02/14/2024 11:21 AM
A sweet poem.
Posted 02/14/2024 08:52 AM
Tom Sharpe:
Such a pretty name youve got.
Posted 02/14/2024 08:02 AM
Thank for a love poem that made me laugh out loud.
Posted 02/14/2024 07:47 AM
Larry Schug:
What the consonants did to the vowels--that's worth a poet thinking about!
Posted 02/14/2024 07:32 AM

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