2012-2013 Online Edition - POETRY

Born

By Katelyn Sabet


What a stunning, frightening child.

Crocodile-smiled.

Small hands and small shoulders,

Little bones, large teeth.

Sticks and stones, roast beef.

Shrill demands and tall orders.

Empties itself of words,

And ties itself to birds,

And flies away, all fun and sun.

Not Icarus, not anyone.





Muted Notes of Yitgadal

By Ariana Siporin


1938

My grandmother walked,

From Frankfurt to New York City,

Under barbed-wire bridges,

Held up by the double-barrel,

Of Switzerland's white flag.

The water broke as they waded through,

Singing muted notes of Yitgadal,

For those who were caught by the tangled black cross.

 

1945

 

My grandmother walked,

From the stern to the bow,

Through crowds of refuged children,

Gliding across the waving expanse,

That lay between fear and freedom.

The water broke as the boat sliced the waves,

Singing muted notes of Yitgadal,

For all of her orphaned shipmates.

1950

My grandmother walked,

From her father to her fate,

Down an aisle of expectations,

Dressed in purity and hope,

Toward a monster lying dormant.

The water would break from eyes bruised and black,

Singing muted notes of Yitgadal,

For all the times he struck her.

 

1951

My grandmother walked,

From Wadsworth to 189th,

Toward the burning Red Cross,

Swollen with life,

A childbearing child.

Her water broke as she labored alone,

Signing muted notes of Yitgadal,

For her youth that was stolen from her.





Crow Sonnet

By Isaac Smith


4 AM- the urban sprawl before us,

A pill too bitter to take without wine.

Smoke billows through the streets, and a faint whine

Issues from last calls poured out in the dust.

In alleys we consummate our unions

While the crows circle o'er our fading forms-

Have circled o'er since the days we were born-

Tortured, hungry, awaiting Communion.

We give freely of our bodies, the bread,

Reciting fervent God-feared liturgies-

Our salvation hidden in memories

From which the crows will soon be fed.

 

We scribble scripture on pre-condemned walls,

But our stories will be told through crows' caws.





ETUI

By Isaac Smith


A trip in the fall

To the corner station

Trees dying gorgeous

Windows rolled down

Us leaned over kissing

In the front seats

The sun splayed over

Old needles

 

Lord Jesus Christ,

 

Cold winter

Morning sun

Hands shook in

Macabre unison

The pupil contracting

Silence

Dust stirring and settling

On drafts of blizzard wind

 

Son of God,

 

 

The spring's dawn mist

Yellow fingers intertwined

A clench and then release

Sunday pouring in

Through the blinds

I stole

A glance

Outside

And there were ghosts

In the fog

 

have mercy on me,

 

Rain quenching

Summer drought

A mother's shrieks

Made a scene

Amid yawned reverence

And black attire

The crowd watched sober

Her body a collapsing temple

 

a sinner.