Tag Archives: Zingara Poetry Picks

We Go, Departing to Dusk by Emily Strauss

Odd that earlier we existed,
felt our own substance before
disappearing to despair,
sometimes gone by nightfall.
We may linger awhile but
the lamp will be snuffed out—

and unless we steel ourselves
to loss, our own and more,
moons will dispel around us
like a vase of flowers with wilted
stems sinking into cloudy water—
then we will lose our grasp.

Surely, this early today, there
remain the skins of opaque ghosts
not yet torn from our ribs
though we may remember the feel
of yesterday’s body extinguished
in our blood, lingering at daylight.

Emily Strauss has an M.A. in English, but is self-taught in poetry, which she has written since college Over 300 of her poems appear in a wide variety of online venues and in anthologies, in the U.S. and abroad. The natural world is generally her framework; she also considers the stories of people and places around her. She is a semi-retired teacher living in California.

 

sleep(less) night by Nicolette Daskalakis

I woke from a dream I didn’t have
from a sleep I didn’t fall
into,
and I asked you:
What did you dream of?

Nothing.

I dreamt of nothing too.

So as we laid in the silence
of an unconscious night,
I pictured someone
hovering
over us in the dark,
mouth open,
eating dreams
we never had.

Nicolette Daskalakis is an award-winning filmmaker, poet, and multi-media artist residing in Los Angeles. She received a BA in film production from the USC School of Cinematic Arts and a minor in Intermedia Arts from the Roski School of Art & Design. Her first book, “because you’re now banging a French girl,” was published in 2015.

Infinity Dance by Derek Piotr

When you cut the root,
thick and yellow from the earth,
the root regrows immediately
purple edged and defiant,
fed by underground rivers
and searching endlessly
while April rain nails blooms
sideways to the saturated lawn.

In this you find the infinite,
the mouth of something in
something else, feathers
where there ought not to be,
a moment of dissonance
bringing clarity to the dying
elms, a single crane cutting
the sky with its bowed wings.

Derek Piotr is a Poland-born producer and composer based in New England, whose work focuses primarily on the voice. When he has free time, he likes to write. His work with sound has been nominated by the jury for Prix Ars Electronica (2012), and featured on Resonance FM and BBC, and his written works have been published by The Broome Street Review, Hanover Press and The Newtowner.

Mouse Heaven Richard King Perkins II

The exterminator has taken away
the small carcasses
and left the smell of Lysol
and coiled snap traps
baited with peanut butter.
Your eyes mourn
those tiny missing lives
wanting there to be
a mouse heaven
free from human dominance.
My laughter makes you wince
and cry even harder.
I hold myself open to you
but even
in my most comforting arms
you cannot find
the slightest hint
of comfort.

Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He lives in Crystal Lake, IL, USA with his wife, Vickie and daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee whose work has appeared in more than a thousand publications.

Rules for flying by Allyson Whipple

Be early, though you’ll inevitably be late. Don’t forget
to tip whoever drives your cab, your shuttle bus. Tolerate
children. Your passport photo will never be flattering,
because you are not allowed to smile. Bring liquor
or melatonin or antihistamines or whatever sedatives are legal
these days. Sleep to avoid jet lag, or exhaust yourself to avoid
jet lag, or don’t bother with either, because they won’t work.
Gum won’t stop your ears from popping. Say Bless your heart
to flight attendants and ticketing agents and mean it. Think
Bless your heart to TSA and customs agents, but don’t say
anything, because it might come out wrong. Observe
how Earth is only a map when you’re 30,000 feet up. Accept
the loss of control, admit you’re at the mercy
of mechanics, logistics, weather.

Allyson Whipple has an M.A. in English and a black belt in Kung Fu. She is currently studying poetry through the UT-El Paso Online MFA Program. Allyson serves as co-editor of the Texas Poetry Calendar, and is the author of the chapbook We’re Smaller Than We Think We Are. She teaches at Austin Community College.

Fugitives by Stephen Mead

It’s always a matter of what’s got to go—–
a name, a family, the life of appliances
just when their warranty’s up,
customary hardships, comfort
secure as the house built by Jack
on four acres of a buried waste dump.

There’s no guarantee here
except for plot twists, many trains
greasing adrenaline in tunnels of glare,
petrol-pungent, urinal-walled—–

Hardly glamorous, only, possibly
the way religion is, any dedicated
frenzy combining chance, will, know-
how’s stupendous calm
depending solely on clues far flung
as refuge—–

junks
wrestling tides in eastern winds,
our eyes, those lanterns, juxtaposed
and wide open for skin, skin
double-shadowed by neon blinking,
sirens, sheets trusting grace then,
then without an alibi
for other warm body lying
in danger of arrest simply
by sleeping,

a loved stranger beside you.

A resident of NY, Stephen Mead is a published artist, writer, maker of short-collage films and sound-collage downloads.  If you are at all interested and get the time, Google “Stephen Mead Art” for links to his multi-media work.

You Will Not Be the Same by Stephen Mead

You brought me cigarettes.IMG_0781[1]
I brought you cough drops.
Wounds were disclosed little
except in momentary darkness
after darkness.
Those shades brought light in
for quite some time.
News has been flapping over:
grey rockets, grainy planes…
Our bodies——palm glades,
our bodies—–sands.
Tent life too occurs: spirit dwellings,
cathedral canteens,
stucco, thatch, bricks.
Our faces peer clear
from such mottled dots.
You send letters I can cherish
like no flag.
I send a hair lock
as if it were a parachute.
In transition, times’ crazy waltz
passes our photos around.
Have you heard?
Mine eyes have seen.
Translate broken languages,
our hybrid tongues,
our multi-racial pasts.
There’s such fertility here,
such peril, and both signify change.
Different you will be and me
I expect too
though the altered love
goes just as deep.

 

A resident of NY, Stephen Mead is a published artist, writer, maker of short-collage films and sound-collage downloads.  If you are at all interested and get the time, click on “Stephen Mead Art” for links to his multi-media work.