Claudia Gary

Difficult Run

   the largest watershed in Fairfax County, Va.

We’ve had one too, but here
is a stream that leads somewhere 
with or without our care.

The sidewalk turns and follows
where a storm drain gulps and swallows. 
Its signage warns: “Keep Clear.”

And now sweet rain arrives
to ensure the woods stay green 
though trash collects unseen.

In the sign a fish swims free 
on stenciled waves to sea. 
Alone, the fish survives.

If the drain gets clogged too high 
will the fish be you, or I?
Nonzero Probability

   to her statistician lover

What were the chances? Zero, nada, zip, 
a fleeting glance, a blip
on a long-obsolete oscilloscope,
no evidence of hope.
However, on a scale of one to nine 
I like you more than fine.

And if I must express this as percent 
of heaven-bent
it deviates, because there is no heaven 
till after seven
when we begin to plot it on our graph. 
Better by half.

Claudia Gary lives near Washington DC and teaches workshops on Villanelle, Sonnet, Natural Meter, Poetry vs. Trauma, etc., at The Writer’s Center (, currently via Zoom. Author of Humor Me (2006) and several chapbooks, most recently Genetic Revisionism (2019), she is also a health science writer, visual artist, and composer of tonal chamber music and art songs. See; follow her on Twitter at @claudiagary.