Weekly Write: “A Poet Is” by Romana Iorga

A Poet Is

1.
An eel, open-mouthed at the mouth
of its burrow, borrowing time
until the right prey comes along.

Fish glide by with their frivolous tails
of who kissed whom in the seaweed
and who got in trouble with the shark.

2.
An owl, morose on its branch,
hungry for three days now and counting,
waiting for the big game.

Mice won’t suffice any longer. No to juvenile
rabbits, daft foxes, reckless raccoons.
A moose would be good.

3.
A spider, spinning constantly, greedily, not
so patiently, slowly becoming Whitman
of the white beard and wide-brimmed hat.

Then, erasing the web, one strand
at a time, for perceived flaws. Nothing
ever catches in the unraveling snare.

4.
A child, whose quick hand traps the tail
of a lizard. He watches it wriggle in the dirt,
while the prey darts for its life.

Swift, swift, swiftly into the blessed
shadow of weeds, into the yawning
jaws of a snake, who’s not even

a poet.

 

Originally from Chisinau, Moldova, Romana Iorga is a  Romanian-American poet living in Switzerland. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Ruminate, saltfront, Borderlands, as well as on her poetry blog at clayandbranches.com.

 

 

 

“Like”, “Share”, and comment on this poem to nominate it for the Annual Swimming with Elephants Publications 2019 Anthology.

Click here check out Parade: Swimming with Elephants Publications Anthology 2018 available for only $10.95.

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Weekly Write: “Unsuitable Terrain” by Avi-Yona Israel

Unsuitable Terrain

today I went crazy
with the feeling that I’m not meant:
my bath became the sea and I tried to have an awakening
batten down the hatches, this was a storm,
and there’s water filling the ship accompanying me down
rain got into my ears filling the back of my throat
sending bitter foamy waves up and out
trembly, frightened to face the expanse without a night sky above –

teeth and nails sawed through my sister’s abandoned pillow,
surprise!
a brief moment to ponder that the feathers are multicolored.
wispy snow softly, one inch thick, will stick
one by one I tore pages from a book about women
of no importance, ideal husbands, lies and also truth
ink, eggshell,
I lay down in my nest

asking if anyone is my mother and if she knows
why I am still here, what is wrong with me?
neck and limbs of a dusty health class mannequin – leaning,
rolling and heaving to woman-made post-mortem sighs bangs whimpers
away from things like sun and hindsight
dry storm hardened feet and knees tucked elsewhere beneath towels and coats
unable to bear the warmth of the bed I made, lie in it
I cried into the floor, mouthed sorry to the downstairs neighbor.

 

Avi-Yona Israel is a writer living in Chicago, IL. Her work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in The Emerson Review, The Seventh Wave, Esthetic Apostle, Capulet Magazine, Cathexis Northwest Press, and midnight & indigo, among others.

 

 

 

“Like”, “Share”, and comment on this poem to nominate it for the Annual Swimming with Elephants Publications 2019 Anthology.

Click here check out Parade: Swimming with Elephants Publications Anthology 2018 available for only $10.95.

Weekly Write: “Perfection” by Andy Posner

Perfection

I had thought I lacked for time
And spent my days frantic,
As though life were a web
And death a looming spider, his
Approach inexorable, his mouth
Large enough to swallow whole
My ambitions.

I had thought I lacked for time
And arose each dawn to make up
For yesterday’s failure,
To promise that today I would be perfect;
I bribed the gatekeepers of perfection
With my promises—
“O, let me through!” I begged.
And at night I’d rub my forehead
Where the iron had held me back,
The currency of my promises
Still glistening like anxious sweat in my hand.

For years I pressed my nose to glass
And watched sun, wind, rain, snow
As they whirled past my stationary self
Like a riderless bicycle balanced
By something, someone, I couldn’t see.

I had thought I lacked for time
And raced to outrun the bell
Whose ring might rouse me from my dream,
Only to at last find I was awake and tired
And still holding coins no deity, no therapist, no poet
Would accept—a pauper with a home, a job, a six-figure net worth,
Wanting for nothing, suddenly with time to spare,
Unable to afford even a moment of calm self-reflection.

 

Andy Posner grew up in Los Angeles and earned an MA in Environmental Studies at Brown. While there, he founded Capital Good Fund, a nonprofit that provides financial services to low-income families. He has had poems published in the Noble / Gas Qtrly, The Esthetic Apostle, and Burningword Literary Journal.

 

 

 

“Like”, “Share”, and comment on this poem to nominate it for the Annual Swimming with Elephants Publications 2019 Anthology.

Click here check out Parade: Swimming with Elephants Publications Anthology 2018 available for only $10.95.

Weekly Write: “Cancer” by Ali Gowrie

Cancer

The fog pours like soup across
the highway and I fell lost but
every set of headlights I pass is
my father’s blue eyes.

He was always best at navigating
the fog, a red and green light
always finding his way through
the harbors and safely home.

And I cry. I cry for Home. I cry
for him, for his unwavering
strength, for how he has taught me
how to avoid rocks with a blind eye.

Daddy, you have been my
radar, my sail and my wind, my
captain, my anchor and line.
Now let me be yours.

 

Ali Gowrie

 

“Like”, “Share”, and comment on this poem to nominate it for the Annual Swimming with Elephants Publications 2019 Anthology.

Click here check out Parade: Swimming with Elephants Publications Anthology 2018 available for only $7.95.

Weekly Write: “The Dogs of the White Cannon” by Jonathan Andrew Perez

The Dogs of the White Canon

The land is a swash of monotone: cobwebs against yellowing barns,
seed pods off rusty fences.

Nothing to glide but the glue, the kind of setting that dulls the senses.

Give me: dog ripping leg on gravel road,
Give me: wolf on fire trail that circles the valley.
I heard dogs travel in packs, at night.
I heard undomesticated baying at the rough horizon.

They plunder the uninhabited
like hound on the trail of a hare,
or tear a shrew from its hole,
or like an Orca flip a seal pup,
head-over-heals in the light.

Buddy, the black lab,
proudly returns home, gangster, down the avenue,
jaw clenched over a wet mouse.
Buddy, listen up, predatory dogs
only mate at night and surely always disturb
any of the familiar faces that make up townsfolk.

Buddy, you are not a regular visitor. Lower your music.
Buddy, each year I have come here, you or another are here
wandering the hamlets: drinking, cheating, killing
in the back of a club, behind a high school gymnasium
near torn-up mounds north of town. Or not you.

Buddy, I saw once. You and I are a kind of undead,
washed up in some quarry
up a peak, not so bleak, because sooner or later a rumor will start
that you have will come back as a mountain lion.

 

Jonathan Andrew Perez is previously published in Prelude, Junto Magazine, The Write Launch and Silver Needle Press. He has a Master’s in English Literature and African American Cultural Studies from the University of Virginia, and a day job is as an Assistant District Attorney in the Kings County District Attorney’s Office as a prosecutor.