Gerry LaFemina is the author of numerous collections of poems and prose, including The Pursuit: A Meditation on Happiness and Baby Step in Doomsday Prepping (prose poems). A writer and musician, he teaches at Frostburg State University, serves as a mentor in the MFA program at Carlow University, and fronts The Downstrokes. "In the Portrait Gallery" is from his spring 2023 book After the War for Independence.

In the Portrait Gallery

In the Portrait Gallery Faces of no one I know, some of themstern-eyed, the rooms they sat in soot dark with coal fires & still births.Thus was born stoicism & the Age of Exploration. I lived that way for decades—alternating between hermitage & pilgrimage; the yin & yang of grim & grin.Sure, the men in …

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