Tammy Robacker

My Satchel

I left many things behind
to come back. I orphaned my doll
with shiny brown hair. Returned
schokolade candies that finished

like rum. I extinguished my Opa
there in a tiny, blue box of snuff.
I brushed the whole year off—
A dandruff. I let the bad fall down

where it landed with the beautiful
too. The golden leather satchel I loved
had a long, thick shoulder strap
and metal snap flap. Such a smart bag

I couldn’t bring home. But sometimes
I peer into it, pulling out dark
tobacco and Kinder egg treats.
My parents too, dead but still

mine. Living among these other
fragile trinkets. Our family secrets
I keep locked here. My heart,
a deep, hidden pocket.

tammy robacker

Tammy Robacker served as Poet Laureate of Tacoma, Wa. in 2010-11 and she is a 2011 Hedgebrook Writer-in-Residence award winner. In 2009, Ms. Robacker published her first collection of poetry, The Vicissitudes. Tammy’s poetry has appeared in Duende, So to Speak, Crab Creek Review, WomenArts, Comstock Review, Up the Staircase Quarterly, and Cascadia Review. Currently enrolled in the MFA program in Creative Writing at Pacific Lutheran University, Tammy is working on a second poetry collection and lives in Oregon. Visit the poet at www.pearlepubs.com