Bridge & Tunnel Books
IMG-0284 copy.jpg

The Commute

"Poems, Part 1" by Dora Moscatello

Into the Arthritis Pool

I stand in the pool at the JCC with my arms spread out across

the concrete walls.

I watch the fragile, timid bodies file down the ladder steps

like transparent silver dollar plants who are prisoners on a chain gang . . .

Do we seek our own river Lethe? A watery path through river Acheron, perhaps

finally arriving at the stream of Okeanos in Elysium . . .


Movement more painless in the warm water

and shared pleasantries.

The real question in my brain is, “how many more times will you be able to come into the pool?”

Or, “which of you will feel your wings beating faster and faster,

until you are lifted from your chrysalis being into a butterfly angel of no weight?”


What do we all expect? To arise from the water

as jubilant children in a lake?

To have one more go-round? To feel no pain? To dance in the rain?


Maybe only a fleeting respite from reality.



Ever sad season.


The tree outside my window

Brushes in the wind against the house

To confirm that it still holds life in its dark belly

Although its arms look dead

It whispers with gathering boldness

To call my attention


It moves with balletic grace and shakes off

No longer necessary pink and russet scales

Mourning its recent verdure.


After the wind and the shedding and the rains

It waits still and patiently

For the winter that is coming.


Changing in a constant rhythm

Inside and out

This tree is life

This tree is me.


Natural World

Nature bears us up

Yet sadly we tamp her down.

Our quest for more, more.


Ocean Skies

Sea grass bends to the sand and prays,

Pines nearly pay the same homage.


A thousand greens and blues and grays swirl

To make up the rainbow I will take home in my soul.


Green Peace

The bright green omnibus passes without noise through

the sky

On its winding way to who knows where.


I rode for a time, but all the stops I

planned on making

were already filled.


The conductor looks familiar but I can’t

recognize his face.

And all the faces I have known are

passengers on the bus.


They get on and off, never seeming to need

a ticket.


I am trying desperately to get off at

the next green spot.

It’s my garden of Eden.


Although originally from Appalachia, DORA MOSCATELLO currently enjoys living in Swisshelm Park and has lived in Pittsburgh for decades. She spent her professional career serving in the scientific publishing industry, after earning her Master’s degree in Literary Studies from Carnegie Mellon University. In undergraduate studies, she concentrated on Spanish and Ancient Greek. Her poetic heroes, from whom she has taken inspiration and influence, are Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, Edna St.Vincent Millay, and Robert Browning. Dora has been a life-long poet and artist, expressing the beauty of life as she sees it through her works.

Heather McAdams