Claudia Gary

Claudia Gary: The Gate Reopens

My father taught me not to fear
a moment of forgetting.
“If it’s important,” he said,
“you will remember it.”
With Mom and me he watched
on black-and-white TV
families divided by barbed wire
as the Berlin Wall went up.

No sooner did it fall
than he was on a plane.
He would cross Checkpoint Charlie,
walk through the Brandenburg Gate,
bring us back shards of concrete
spray-painted and demolished,
fluorescent green graffiti words
divided, not forgotten.

Claudia Gary lives near Washington DC and teaches workshops on Sonnet, Villanelle, Natural Meter, Poetry vs. Trauma, etc., at The Writer’s Center (, currently via Zoom. Author of Humor Me (2006) and several chapbooks, most recently Genetic Revisionism (2019), she is also a health science writer, visual artist, and composer of tonal chamber music and art songs. See ; follow her on Twitter at @claudiagary.