Sonnets by Jean Syed


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“Jean Syed is an elegant poet who also blesses us with a fresh sense of humor. A poem of hers is impeccably crafted and always brings the reader a sense of surprise and discovery. A book by Jean Syed will become a treasured possession.” —Jerry Judge


Waiting for Doctor Cohen at his Clinic

A minnow, captive in your garden pond
am I become, in mourning for the pure,
same air we breathed when I was still your peer,
not exiled from my own kind on the land.

Say, what was my offense? A brash excess
of normalcy? Whose loving eye discerned
the corrective that wreaked on me, unwarned,
this isolating metamorphosis?

Here, sunk in thralldom, changelings make no school,
each to his lonely weed. My alien mouth
swallows its element, but filters out
the panic microbes fecund in my jail,

till jealous always of your bailiwick
you stir up sediment that makes me sick.


Jean Syed was born in the North West of England she attended Nelson Grammar School (a high school) and Birmingham University. On graduation, she became a social worker in Portsmouth, England. On marriage she went to live in Derby where she studied law, but America intervened. She has lived in Loveland, Ohio in the same house for twenty-nine years. She has a husband, Asif, and one son.

Additional information

Weight 4 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × .25 in