One Poem by Tresha Faye Haefner

What I Loved About Finding the Man Trying to Steal My Purse Out of the Closet When I Came Home Early in the Middle of the Day

                  After Ellen Bass… Sort of.

The suddenness of his surprised face, as I entered the bedroom.
The way a movie starts half-way through the action,
The hero already bleeding.
The smell of his body so close to mine as he tried
To get past the door. His jaw hard as the FBI building
shoulders square as the edges of Table Mountain in Colorado.
He held my bag, close as I wanted to be held.
The room smelled like lemon bleach.
The tile green as a field of serpents.
My arms felt like two feathers, plastered with rain.
Something he could wipe away with his thumb.
I loved the feel of my purse as I tried to take it back.
The tug, as we struggled, like a roller coaster when it stalls and jerks forward.
How he could have killed me.
How he pulled the pink strap from my fingers
and ran from my terrible mouth instead.


Tresha Faye Haefner’s poetry appears, or is forthcoming in several journals and magazines, most notably Blood Lotus, Blue Mesa Review, The Cincinnati Review, Five South, Hunger Mountain, Mid-America Review, Pirene’s Fountain, Poet Lore, Prairie Schooner, Radar, Rattle, TinderBox and Up the Staircase Quarterly. Her work has garnered several accolades, including the 2011 Robert and Adele Schiff Poetry Prize, and a 2012, 2020, and 2021 nomination for a Pushcart. Her first manuscript, “Pleasures of the Bear” was a finalist for prizes from both Moon City Press and Glass Lyre Press. It is still looking for a publisher. Find her at

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