Tag Archives: Slipstream

“Elegy for Shura” by Diane G. Martin

“What is that beautiful game?”
“It’s not important.
All those who knew how to play
are either dead, or have
long since forgotten.” “Even you?”

“Especially me.”
“Is it ivory?” “Only bone.
The ivory game
was sold during hard times. Too
bad, yes, but it matters

not if no one plays.” “Teach me,
Shura.” “I do not remember.
And anyway, what is the point?
Then with whom shall you play?”
“I’ll teach someone else.”

“Did you ever hear the one
about the old Odessan
Jew who drove to town…”
“You can’t divert me so cheaply.
Now back to the game. Shame

on you for using such a ruse!
I expected better,” I grin.
“You ask too much; I’m dying.
I’ve no energy
for whims. So, join me at the sea

again this year and then we’ll see.”

Diane G. Martin, Russian literature specialist, Willamette University graduate, has published work in numerous literary journals including New London Writers, Vine Leaves Literary Review, Poetry Circle, Open: JAL, Pentimento, Twisted Vine Leaves, The Examined Life, Wordgathering, Dodging the Rain, Antiphon, Dark Ink, Gyroscope, Poor Yorick, Rhino, Conclave, Slipstream, and Stonecoast Review.

“Internal Exile” by Diane G. Martin,

          “…we have no hope and yet
          we live in longing.”

                     Inferno, Dante

I’ve been pressed between the pages
of a heavy book, a keepsake
to be rediscovered one fine
day, yellow, brittle, print-stained—
a sentimental talisman.

I’m so close to every line;
indeed, they are on me engraved.
Exquisite shapes keep me awake,
though once lofty, once plain thoughts have
blurred, have rubbed their meanings away.

The lack of air is thick with them—
clouds of locusts on a rampage—
these words elbowing each other
These worlds of words, all alien.
I distrust them–black, banal worn.

Yet it’s not for nothing I’m named
Diana.  For now, I bide my
hours quietly, lie warily
between famed leaves and string my bow.
Somehow, I’ll fly to the dark wood.

Diane G. Martin, Russian literature specialist, Willamette University graduate, has published work in numerous literary journals including New London Writers, Vine Leaves Literary Review, Poetry Circle, Open: JAL, Pentimento, Twisted Vine Leaves, The Examined Life, Wordgathering, Dodging the Rain, Antiphon, Dark Ink, Gyroscope, Poor Yorick, Rhino, Conclave, Slipstream, and Stonecoast Review.

 

 

Seeing a Picture of 2 Guys I Knew 40 Years Ago by Jeanne DeLarm-Neri

I knew them like fluid,
like we were all connected,
linked by our roaming molecules,
like we shared the same skin cells,
bumped arm to arm in sparks.
Like cigarettes lit, glowed, burned,
light one with the suck of the other.
You could smoke in the diner then,
and at night we sat in a bar
which burned down last year.
Drinks included crème de menthe.
Its sweet child body slipped down cool
and came up hot and undigested,
baby puke, no bits of stomach lining,
no pieces of the pulmonary system.
Though as I inspect the picture of these two,
slender, hair to the shoulders,
dressed in chinos and moccasins,
one smiling under a mustache
and the other worried, keys in hand,
I believe that a cardiologist
may detect a nick or two
missing from my aorta—
pieces of me left behind
on an Ohio lawn, should a machine
be invented that could measure
the weight of a moment lost.

Though Jeanne DeLarm-Neri has written poetry and stories for her entire life, she also earns a living in other fields, particularly as a bookkeeper at a private school, and as a vendor of antiques. Her poems and short fiction have been published in two anthologies (In Gilded Frame 2013 and Poems Of The Super-Moon, 2015), and several literary journals, one of which, Slipstream, nominated a poem for the Pushcart Prize. In 2014 and 2015 she was a contributor at the  Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She’s currently working on a book of poems and a novel.

Pick for June 5: Agreements by Joan Mazza

I will not collect the hair
from your brush, nor the nail
parings you drop in the pail
to cast a spell. You won’t hear
whispered commands in your ear
while you sleep so I can have my way.
I will not call the old woman
on the mountain who sells potions
and instructs on fertility. Though
she has ways to make rain fall on you
to restrain you. We’ll keep our vows
simple, neither of us bowing.
When we sleep we’ll stay on our sides
of the bed unless beckoned. I’ll wash your
dishes, you wash mine, and deep
we’ll travel until dead.
Neither of us will iron or be ironed.

Joan Mazza has worked as a medical microbiologist, psychotherapist, sex therapist, writing coach and seminar leader. She is the author of six books, including Dreaming Your Real Self (Perigee/Penguin/Putnam), and her work has appeared in Cider Press Review, Rattle, Off the Coast, Kestrel, Permafrost, Slipstream, Timber Creek Review, The MacGuffin, Writer’s Digest, The Fourth River, the minnesota review, Personal Journaling, Free Inquiry, and Playgirl. She now writes poetry and does fabric art in rural central Virginia. www.JoanMazza.com

“By reading and writing poetry, I come to terms with my obsessions.”