Ingrid Bruck is wild flower gardener and a poet inspired by nature. She lives in Amish country in Pennsylvania. This site shocases selected works by her.

Nocturne, Cory’s Fire, Lieu’s Visit - Published by: Gould Writers at Guest House 2017



Night comes tripping inside my head.

Wind bursts sway trees tops,

then stillness drops.

Dreams flap, soar on an updraft.

Notes land, wings enwrap me.

Feather steps skip

down a staircase without a slip

into silence that echoes 

up a gallery for three floors

under every bedroom door.

Crystal bells are stones

dropped into a well,

circles spin into darkness,

I follow.


(First Published in Red Fez, Issue 105, 2017) 



Cory’s Fire


Walking backwards, 

she locks the door on herself


She’s a visitor in her own house

and can’t find the kitchen 


Sun is a stranger for weeks after natural disasters

when fires burned in Vancouver forests


when mountain waves tore the eastern shore

when Hurricane Maria flattened Puerto Rico


now in Colorado a thousand miles from California, 

red sunsets mimic firestorms of the west


Along the west coast, days are dark with smoke

and cinders fall like rain in my sister’s hair


Capricious Santa Ana winds skip the fire from place to place

a new forest fire blooms and rages in Santa Rosa


makes leaps that miss my sister’s town of Sebastapol

but devours a section of Santa Rosa blocks from where she works


My sister shows up at work but nobody’s there

she flees back home to wait for evacuation


Demon fire melts trees, animals, people’s lives,

heats sauna rocks, hot enough to bake tortillas


Giant sequoia rings of fire tower over the forest

smoke clogs Cascadia and rolls to the Pacific


She breathes through a scarf over her face 

lungs ache, eyes smart


The stranger outside forces himself in with smoke, 

walking backward, Cory closes her door on the fire



Lieu’s Visit


Somber serious Mr. Lieu visits for dinner. 

His face shows he knows pain and sorrow,

he’s a survivor, one of the Vietnam boat people. 

Many relatives were victim of war, 

struck with the speed of a banded krait, 

bit with more poison than it takes to kill.

Some corpses were sunk in stinking mud paddies,

others decapitated, their heads staked on poles.


He alone escaped, rowing a boat out to sea at night

into placid water the temperature of soup. 

A helicopter patrol saw only an empty rowboat

but soldiers leaned out the door with rifles, 

shot up spray, one bullet grazed his arm

while he held his breath and prayed, 

hanging to the underside of the craft

while blowfish stung his arms and legs.


After they left, he hauled up his swollen body, 

tumbled over the edge of the boat

and collapsed on the bottom, 

a pile of wet rags with fever. 

He floated into angry waves 

as big as his house to freedom.


A navy ship dredged him up, 

turned him over to military police. 

He was sent to a refugee camp, 

processing papers took months.

He was granted sanctuary in America,

loves this country for it,

but if you say the word Communist,

he’ll spit on the floor. 


His kindness sits at our table, 

gentleness cloaks our home,

He’s an elder who mows old women’s grass 

because he cares. 



Anthology:  Gould Writer’s at Guest House 2017


Date Published:  Dec. 15, 2017


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bare winter - Published by: tinywords, Issue 17.2