Barbara Mautone Robidoux

Barbara Mautone Robidoux



After three years of drought

red hollyhocks reappear

in the kitchen dooryard.

Rains of regret silently soak the red earth.


I left the sea to live in the desert mountains,

you stayed behind in the coastal green

sheltered by  foggy mists.


For protection, I hung red and yellow prayer flags

to ride the wind around the house.

Watched thorns of a honey locust

catch them, then set them free—

so many words we left behind.


Today on my arthritic knees

I planted ten plum trees.

Does this mean I will linger

in this city of adobe walls

and lonely nights?

Barbara Mautone Robidoux is the author of three books of poetry: Waiting for Rain (2012), Migrant Moon (2012) and the forthcoming Storm Left No Flowers (2018}. She also writes fiction which has appeared in Denver Quarterly, Yellow Medicine Review, and elsewhere. Her collection of short stories, Sweetgrass Burning: Stories from the Rez (2016) and a novella The Legacy of Lucy Little Bear (2017) were published by Blue Hand Books. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the Institute of American Indian Arts where she teaches in the MFA program. Both of her paternal grandparents were born in the Mezzogiorno of Italy and immigrated to the US late in the 1800’s. Barbara speaks Italian and has lived in Italy.