Free Verse by Charlotte Digregorio

This poem is taken from my new poetry-reference book, Ripples of Air: Poems of Healing, that includes 330 poems of fourteen forms, along with inspiration, guidance, and publicity ideas for writers.

The Dust

by Charlotte Digregorio


I look at lingering fog

and crusty leaves.

Inside, another Sabbath


of housework begins,

a black apron

around my neck.


My worn hands dust the table.

One swipe with a rag

and white blackens.


Dust descends to the rug

like dandelion puffs drifting.

It hides in fibers.


Above the mantle, I remove

film from the mirror.

Behind loose strands of hair,


I stare at my aging self,

getting the freckles

I wanted in childhood.


The radio plays dissonant,

nameless sonatas

with sobbing violins.


I vacuum with Mother’s Electrolux,

drowning out the requiem,

wondering how much of this dust is me.


Copyright 2020 by Charlotte Digregorio.


About Charlotte Digregorio

I publish books. I have marketed and/or published 55 titles. These books are sold in 46 countries to bookstores, libraries, universities, professional organizations, government agencies, and book clubs. In 2018, I was honored by the Governor of Illinois for my thirty-eight years of accomplishments in the literary arts, and my work to promote and advance the field by educating adults and students alike. I am the author of seven books including: Haiku and Senryu: A Simple Guide for All; Everything You Need to Know About Nursing Homes; You Can Be A Columnist; Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features; Your Original Personal Ad; and my latest, Ripples of Air: Poems of Healing. The first four books have been adopted as supplemental texts at universities throughout the U.S., Canada, India, Pakistan, and Catalonia. They are sold in 43 countries, and are displayed in major metropolitan cultural centers. These books have been reviewed, recommended, and praised by hundreds of critics, librarians, and professors worldwide. I am also the author of a poetry collection: "Shadows of Seasons: Selected Haiku and Senryu by Charlotte Digregorio." Two of my books have been Featured Selections of Writer's Digest Book Club. I am regularly interviewed by major print, radio, and television organizations throughout the U.S. I regularly sign books at libraries, chain bookstores, and university bookstores, and do poetry readings at art centers, cafes, tea houses, and galleries. I was recently nominated for two Pushcart Prizes in poetry. I have won fifty-nine poetry awards, writing fourteen poetic forms. My poetry has been translated into eight languages. I do illustrated solo poetry exhibits 365 days a year in libraries, galleries, corporate buildings, hospitals, convention centers, and other venues. My individual poems have been displayed at supermarkets, apparel and wine shops, banks, botanic gardens, restaurants, and on public transit. I have been nominated and listed in "The International Authors and Writers Who's Who" in Cambridge, England and in the "Who's Who In Writers, Editors & Poets U.S./Canada." I hosted my own radio program, "Poetry Beat," on public broadcasting. My poetry has been featured on several library web sites including those of Shreve Memorial Library in Louisiana and Cornell University's Mann Library. My background includes positions as a feature editor and columnist at daily newspapers and as a magazine editor. I have been a public relations director for a non-profit organization. I am self-employed as a public relations/marketing consultant, having served a total of 118 clients in 23 states for the past several decades . In other professional areas, I have been on university faculties, teaching French, Italian, and Writing. I regularly give lectures and workshops on publishing, journalism, publicity, poetry, and creativity to business and professional groups, and at writer's conferences, universities, literary festivals, non-profit organizations, and libraries. I have been a writer-in-residence at universities. There have been about 400 articles written about me in the media. I have served on the Boards of writers and publishers organizations. My positions have included Board Secretary of the Northwest Association of Book Publishers. I served for five years as Midwest Regional Coordinator of The Haiku Society of America, and for two years as its Second Vice President.
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8 Responses to Free Verse by Charlotte Digregorio

  1. Maureen Weldon says:

    Lovely poem with much food for thought.

  2. MaryJo says:

    One of my favorite poems, Charlotte. There’s so much there. Thank you.

  3. Paul Beech says:

    Doing Sunday housework with “lingering mist” outside and “sobbing violins” on the radio, autumnal introspection creeps in, a lament over aging symbolized in dust.

    Your poem truly moved me, Charlotte, being no spring chicken myself!

    Take care,


  4. A very moving and touching poem, especially this part:
    Dust descends to the rug
    like dandelion puffs drifting.
    It hides in fibers.

    Lovely, Charlotte.

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