Beth Gallovic

Pine Row Issue No. 6 Winter 2022-23 - Featured Poet

Tangled Laundry

I went weeks without

washing my favorite pajamas

after this last tearful trip to see you.

Pressed their aqua softness to my chest,

imagined myself pressed to your chest,

the bones and soft tissue of you.

My practicality took over, pajamas washed

free of sentiment, yet the rinse cycle

flooded me with regret.

Not a molecule of smell,

no more fabric holding memory of

my body next to yours.

Warm dry pajamas

tumble me back twenty years, another

laundry regret that still presses my heart;

The blue maternity shirt,

no longer with the bloodstain

from my firstborn, stillborn son.

Interview with Beth Gallovic

How did you get started writing poetry?

I kept myself from it for years, unfortunately, listening to an internalized voice that said writing poetry was ‘frivolous,’ a waste of time. A change in life circumstances put me in touch with the deep longing for poetry that I had tamped down, and I could no longer ignore the place in me that was crying out to write.

Who has had the biggest impact on you as a poet?

I have a dear friend who asks wise questions and listens with great compassion, who supported me in finding my voice. They helped me see that poetry is a beautiful source of meaning and joy in my life, and therefore absolutely worth pursuing.

I also took the courageous step, as a beginner, of joining two poetry feedback groups that included published poets. I finish a poem each week, and in a safe and supportive space, I learn from others how I might improve it. I am so grateful for these fellow poets, their insights and encouragement!

What inspires your poetry?

Birds, I have many poems connected with birds yet to write. I am drawn to explore the physical and emotional contours of objects, thoughts and experiences, which often opens a deep dialogue. Such wonderful surprises emerge, connections I did not know were there. I adore the feeling of my pen flowing across the paper, and how writing poetry opens me up to new ways of seeing.

What is next for you?

With this being my first published poem, I am now buoyed even further to continue writing and submitting! Also, when I find poetry by others that leaves me breathless, that deeply resonates with me, I would like to take more time to learn some of the “why” and “how” of that, in order to improve my own craft.

Beth Gallovic has been seen on the hiking trails around Boulder Colorado, pulling out creased squares of paper from her backpack to scribble down lines of poetry. She marvels, often, and especially outdoors, at what an expansive force poetry has become in her life. You can find Beth on Facebook.