February On The Herengracht



not the kind that heralds frozen waterways,

an eleven-city race on skates, but a change

on the cheek, a white sky smile.

Slow mist and snow, gulls

glissade low over the canals,

grey-on-grey then gone.


wide onto feathered white, lacing

branch by branch into city time.

To be consumed by this pale

portrait, where all is stillness

save for our two forms, slow, slow

under layers of white then gone.

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Poetry and Photography by Hollis Kurman

Hollis Kurman is a contributing editor on the Board of Barrow Street Books and is a member of SCBWI. Hollis studied poetry writing at Penn with Daniel Hoffman, former Poet Laureate Consultant to the Library of Congress. Her poems have been published in Barrow Street, Rattle, Phoebe, the Ocean State Review, VIA (Voices in Italian Americana), and the anthology “The Path Not Taken,” where it won The Editor’s Choice Award. Her poem “The Farm” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She also now writes poems and stories for children, including new picture book project “Welcome! A Counting Book of Kindnesses” (tracing the refugee child’s journey through the lens of help offered along the way—currently in development with Amnesty International Books).    

In addition to her writing, she moderates literary events and is Chairperson of the Ivy Circle Netherlands, member of the Fulbright Board NL, Founder of the Human Rights Watch NL Committee, and member of HRW Women’s Rights Advisory Council. She lives in Amsterdam and, occasionally, New York.