Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Poets in Port, February 29, 2008

Poets in Port will feature J R Turek at 7:30 pm on Friday, February 29, 2008 at Caffé Portofino, 249 Main St., Northport, opposite the theatre. There will also be an Open Reading — the audience is encouraged to bring their poems and participate. For more information, contact Steven Schmidt.

J R (Judy) Turek

  • is in her 10th year as Moderator of the Farmingdale Creative Writing Group
  • winner of the Conklin Prize for Poetry, awarded on February 15, 2008
  • author of They Come And They Go
  • a member of Maxwell Wheat’s Nassau County Poet Laureate Committee
  • strives to write a poem a day and mostly succeeds
  • in 2007, edited several poetry anthologies

J R has been published in:

  • Grassroot Reflections, Volumes 3 through 6
  • primal sanities!
  • Free-Wheeling: Towe Auto Museum Poetry Collection
  • Soul Fountain
  • Friends of Hempstead Plains 2007 Poetry Anthology
  • The Meadowlark
  • Long Island Sounds: 2007 and 2006
  • Long Island Quarterly
  • For Loving Precious Beast
  • The Long Islander
  • the East Meadow Herald
  • Performance Poets Association Literary Reviews #8 through 11
  • Long Island Expressions Autism Awareness
  • 2001: A Long Island Odyssey
  • the Farmingdale Poetry Chapbook

Her poetry will appear in:
and PAUMANOK: Poetry and Pictures of Long Island.

She is a born and bred Long Islander who resides in East Meadow with her soul-mate husband, her dogs, and her extraordinarily extensive shoe collection.

If you see the license plate MSJEVUS, follow her; chances are, she’s going to a poetry event.

Judy's poems can be read online at
Poetry Bay and pages 2 and 6 of this LI Writers' guild newsletter.
A video of J.R. reading can be seen at Poetry VLog.

Awarded February 15, 2008


She came with a name I can’t remember
don’t know why I called her Sylvia
an extension of my right hand
everywhere I went
her hard plastic body, arms and legs jointed
her molded head with sandy
permed curls usually tangled

as was mine
my mother would brush our hair stroke for stroke
Sylvia’s sleepy eyes closing as our heads nestled for a nap
her closed mouth a defiant pout refusing lunch or cookies
or milk colored with food dye
the ritual of our diaper and dress changes
tiny apparel in powdered laundry loads.

Sylvia secreted my wishes, agreed with me
my brother was a jerk, mom could be stern
and dad was mostly perfect
her leg broke when my brother roughed it from her body
my father surgeoned her back to me, her lace collar
collected my tears, transformed them into laughter
my brother pecked her cheek

in contrition and we hugged away the years
as Sylvia sat on my bed, then a book shelf
watching as I struggled through math homework
then relegated to a corner of my closet
where she kept company with tap shoes
and rollerskates, tennis racket and jump rope
and I left her for a circle of new friends.

I can still feel her in my arms
the raised line of her seamed body
the crease on her temple where her head dented
carried upside down up and down porch steps
in the formative years of our togetherness.
Sylvia, wishing I could pull you from the closet
I have so many secrets to tell you.
~ J R Turek September 13, 2007


Long Island Expressway

A honeysuckle summer day starts with a motorcycle
see-sawing lane to lane in belly-crawling traffic,
hopscotches to follow the white dotted line between vehicles,
horns blare, he thumb-nose laughs, leaves
a cough of exhaust as he rumbles off.
In his wake, a diesel-driven 10-wheeler swings in
to cut me off, to slide in like a ninth inning runner
to home plate; cinder pellets rain down on my hood,
I swerve left/right in a roadway game of dodgeball
trying to avoid rocks strewn by a bully in the sandbox.
Siren screams, red/white flashing lights hula-hoop
from the monkeybar above the car, the trooper
musical chairs in to join our ringolevio delay.
A plateless rusted hunk-of-junk snails in the left lane,
driver tries to peer through the steering wheel
while cars merry-go-round him, cop tags him
to take to the hokey-pokey; we spread wings and fly by.
Olly olly oxen free; it’s Monday
we’re late again
stuck on the playground of the LIE.

~ J R Turek September 19, 2007


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