Tag Archives: The Errant Thread


ALL THE FEMINIST POETS features a single poem and an interview from a feminist poet that we love.



Elline Lipkin is currently a Research Scholar with UCLA’s Center for the Study of Women.  She also teaches poetry for Writing Workshop Los Angeles. Her first book, The Errant Thread, was chosen by Eavan Boland for the Kore Press First Book Award, and her second book Girls’ Studies was published by Seal Press. After many peripatetic years spent in all regions of the US and abroad, she now lives in Los Angeles.



                                                   La Sorcière

In literal French: a sorceress, a witch, also slang for any older,
 unmarried woman.  In French custom, a sorcière is also the name
for a simple band worn as a safeguard above a wedding ring.

                                                          It curls,
                           a thin slice of dun moon, its pressed lips
                           un-made-up against the stars’ hoyden brass.

                                                          And lines,
                           a tin wrinkle marring the stone’s set face,
                           a pucker of grey band capping the light’s fall.

                                                         It twists,
                          the concierge against her 6 a.m. broom, restless to sweep
                          two sets of 4 a.m. prints, fugitives fled past her door.

                                                        And taunts,
                          the loose gleam off a crinoline, a fille de joie’s indolent wink,
                          bordered by the nun’s stern wimple, the crone’s weird glance.

                                                        It sets,
                          flash status against the spinster’s slow fade, last aunt,
                          the mystery within the sealed attic’s rat-a-tat-tat.

                                                       Then pairs,
                          two cards pulled side by side from the arcana,
                          the diamond’s naive reach, the queen’s argentine pall. 

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