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Poetry Issues #5

summer stone
summer stone
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Thursday, 01 September 2016

The September issue is out now. Read it here:

 

 

Democracy

 

In sarcastic punishment

the word hangs from its hinges

like a rusty sign turned upside down

flapping due to unstoppable winds

in the flat desert sands of civilization

losing its meaning like it never had

personal history. Its essence hovering

projecting wraithlike visions

of what might have been.

 

 

Evenings with Grandma

 

Among the reassuring roundness of buttons

in the churchly silence of the haberdashery

I examined with the stern brow of the assessor

treasures in mother of pearl and carved ivory.

 

Along the hollow spools of silken thread

that tied me to nothing but minuter tints

of damask red and cobalt blue, I contemplated

on their amaranthine possibilities for coalescing.

 

At home, I danced away to the airy scissors snips

and the fast, unsteady beat of the sewing machine.

On the pincushion I did my little voodoo thing

wore a thimble and pronounced my pointer queen.

 

 

Migrating

 

An acute change of

wardrobe. Never seen flowers

thirsting for the sun.

 

 

Guilt

 

From all the ghosts that

haunt me, the ones I fear the

most are still alive.

 

 

A Break-Up in Late Thirties

 

She tried to gather her thoughts

in a single confrontational sentence

while the children slept in their cots.

 

She dressed the table in blue polka dots

brewing on her need for acceptance

as she tried to gather her thoughts.

 

She cleaned the fridge and paired the socks

but her eyes never strayed from the entrance,

while the children slept in their cots.

 

She decided, dusting her chipped teapots,

that the cheap ones have greater endurance,

and then tried to gather her thoughts.

 

Under the louder than life kitchen clock

she thought she heard a car in the distance.

Meanwhile, the children slept in their cots.

 

Petting the faithful, warm-breathed dog,

the only male who was still of assistance,

she tried to gather her thoughts.

 

Her husband came at midnight and brought

a loaf of cold bread and a bag of repentance.

She was waiting with gathered thoughts

and the children still slept in their cots.

 

 

The Monks

 

For forty years, in utter silence and candlelight

the three of them worked copiously in their cells

with the tomes of hellenistic philosophy.

Their indoctrinated quills were ablaze

while copying Aristotle’s unmoved mover

and Plato’s conforming form of the good.

 

But on Epicurus there were long pauses

for there was a worm in the heretic’s words

eating out the apple of unquestioned devotion.

 

The hegumen kept his raven eye on them

sensing how they shook their fatigued heads

in dread and understanding. The rest went about

their common business of trade, intrigue, and prayer.

 

Longing for the Garden of their secret faith,

in their deathbed they didn’t call for priests

but for one of the agriculturists, and asked

for gardenias and lemon trees to be planted

above their unsung, shameful graves.

 

 

 

 

 

 
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