Noticing what has changed
the way you incline
towards the volcano
slope to the right, a fire
whenever you don’t look
averted eyes like fuel
feed the flames
the sequence of movement
all secret though not well kept
besides things have to get done
whatever it takes
to hold back the lava
one morning a bird entered
a welcome swallow, clearly lost
its flight diverted
into another world by mistake
though I’ve never been superstitious
why start now
it finally found the way out
a reminder of how
fast things change
it isn’t just because it’s cold
I can’t face another
the soft whoosh of breath
this magma meditation
your mantle plume, your scars
Magdalena Ball is a novelist, poet, reviewer and interviewer, and is the editor of Compulsive Reader (compulsivereader.com). She has been widely published in journals and anthologies, and is the author of several published books of poetry and fiction, including most recently the novel Black Cow, and the poetry book Unmaking Atoms (forthcoming, Ginninderra Press).
Laura De Bernardi
Cup This Runneth Over
What is this this - this
Urge Urged Urging:
Wording Worded Word This,
Why, What, Where, When, and
Noun this, Verb this, Pronoun this; this
Predicate restriction this -
Paratax, Provocate, Denotate:
This thising this
This poesies thising
This it this,
It, This it this
Adverbially thisally thisiallyinging:
YOU WANT THIS?
OK! enough of this thising. The point is:
THiS iS ModPo!
This dedication of gratitude is for everyone involved with ModPo. After a few finale, but not too finale, words, we, "Spread wide our narrow hands."
Laundry day poem
I renewed my subscription to Poetry
because it was half price. I still haven't
read the volumes from two years ago.
They end up in the laundry room, discarded,
donated to neighbors. Some issues remain
in their wrappers - it's hard to write poetry
and read it at the same time. Think
my next writing project will be a novel.
Of course, nothing is more fun
than composing haiku in Twitter. Well,
maybe Periscope might be interesting -
real time, live, in color, and direct to the reader.
Can you feel my pulse between the lines?
Does the flow of words make any sense at all?
My nights are spent in front of a small screen
Over Walt Whitman, Ginsberg, or Ms Stein,
Decyph'ring lines well known or yet unseen,
PennSound decanting voices like sweet wine.
O Poetry, what is your secret? Speak—
Inspire my sleepless nights, my dreamlike days,
So keen am I to close-read every week,
So happy when I have to write essays!
Unhinged be all your windows and your doors—
Come—show me all the treasures of your Realm,
Hidden between the walls, under the floors—
For—This—I know: a line may overwhelm,
Unbalance, shock, dissemble or disclose—
No matter what it does—It is not Prose!
NUDE DESCENDING AN AFTERLIFE
the afterlife was hard to take
I’d been reborn so many times since then
Once a satyr
met the sphinx
lunched with Da Vinci
ran guns with Girabaldi
you know the drill
I refuse to believe in reincarnation
though the furniture’s been here for three thousand years
cause I stub my toe in all the same places
and have reinvented the wheel so many times
Pythagoras ran me out of town
when I told him it could never be round enough
that fiction requires a vacuum
and no place is leak proof
least of all
teeming with ghosts, cracked tiles, and priceless carvings
the best were taken to Berlin by slaves
what did they want to lay claim to?
didn’t they know you can never go back
no matter how many times you’re reborn?
yet my aged toes look younger each time
and I can almost make a perfect crepe now
while this kitchen in its immensity
holds too many cooks to count
but eventually I’ll become them all