MY POEMS IN DOWN IN THE DIRT

I’m super excited to have four of my earlier poems in Down in the Dirt, an excellent lit journal, also publishing previously published works.

Interestingly, I was first notified they’d accepted two, but then I sent a follow up letter with two additional poems saying although I know they don’t want the rhyme in their magazine, I’ll take my chances, knowing that the one that rhymes here and there is a good one, and assuring them that when I use it, though rarely, I do it for a good reason, never for the sake of the rhyme itself.

So, persistence pays off.

You can read my poems here, here, here and here.

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN

Change out of your ill-intentioned criticism
like you change out of wet clothes
Dispose of quasi-intellectual swordplay
imagine it’s hazardous waste you dump in someone else’s seas
if it’s gonna make it easier
Get rid of your flamboyant confidence, and
highly combustible speeches
like you’d get rid of lonesome socks and expired meds
forget them like promises and mom’s chocolate cake recipes
you’ll never keep
Stop hurling armies against armies
Do away with your racism and xenophobia
your country continues to be built on the backs of immigrants
Don’t kill hope, let
Lady Liberty do her job
Throw away your harmful kicks, and godlike omnipotence
like yesterday’s papers
like useless wire hangers for shirts you never liked
like worn out shoes however much you like them
Toss your bomb threats
like you’d toss old VHS tapes and business cards into the trash
don’t you know you’re disposable too
your expiration date is blinking No longer safe to consume
Throw them out like broken toys
while you still can
your children have children
Miss a chance to make a fortune
Let others pursue happiness for a change


 

via TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN ~ BOJANA STOJCIC — MORALITY PARK

50 SHADES OF RAIN

A dull sky. Rain falling down in perfect vertical lines
uninterrupted by celebratory gunfire shooting vertically into the air
Cold-blooded rain of bullets falling to earth short of kinetic energy
during the liturgy read from the prayer book by a clergyman.
People killed in the Philippines by falling bullets in the rain.
The body and blood of Christ in the mouths
commemorating the Last Supper.

Dad pounds back a few beers after work. Home, he
pounds on the kitchen table cos dinner’s not served
before beckoning to his wife. Hey, you!
Speculating.
You’re begging to be pounded, aren’t you?
Penetrating.
As she screams into a pillow.
Suffocating.
The little girl’s heart pounds while she stares at warm summer rain
pounding on the window pane.

Envious rain watching us arch and writhe, eavesdropping
pelting rain glistening like lips when I spread for you.
Rain under the sheets grabbed with both hands, dripping.
Thoughts of a sudden burst of vivid sunshine.

Patchy drizzle pregnant with hope. 3,000 per day, they bray,
flee to conquer the sea
Callous rain falling mercilessly on conflicts, persecutions and poverty.
Fat raindrops stinging like mosquitoes. That’s sure bad news,
utters a spokesperson somberly
with the iPhone X in his hand.
Threatening rain whipping asylum seekers in wooden vessels
with pebbles in their pockets. 14 deaths per day
they (almost sadly) say.
Boats wrecked off the coast of Lampedusa, a slaughter of innocents
Europe’s welcoming scorn poured on Les Misérables, a slaughter of survivors.
Indifferent rain hammering relentlessly everywhere they go.

Dark-hued rain stalking
a child suicide bomber, waist encircled by an explosive belt,
and his big brother who never smelled
a pussy. Virgins in his head,
waiting.

A single sunbeam breaking through a thick cloud.
A messenger. So-called.
Text me.
Oh shoot, I forgot my cell again. Age-old
forgetfulness.

Fidgety rain sitting impatiently on a cloud watching a funeral procession for
murder victims
of another school shooting.
Don’t sweat it, shouts Big Daddy. We won’t forget it.
I’m no vulture. But why don’t we celebrate our gun culture a wee bit more
for it’s like horticulture and agriculture.
Substituting, instituting, executing.

A man given a restraining order for punching his wife,
mother of his newborn, in rain-drenched Munich
Savage rain sadistically falling on a prostitute on Bourbon Street
beaten by a pimp with the resurrection cocktail in his hand.

A nonchalant rain of fluffy dandelion seeds along the Danube
blown away high. Make a wish.
I saw dead fish
floating with plastic bottles in a fountain by the Louvre.

Drops of wind-driven water falling from the sky
after a rear-end collision on Highway 17 near Lexington Parkway.
The driver of the fifth ejected from his car. Motionless.
Multiple insurance carriers determining fault.
A boy hit by the thunderbolt
in central Laos when he
saw her dancing barefoot in the torrential rain.
Thunderstorms strike southern England overnight
selfies under the sky dropping icy stones
the size of grapes interrupted by a bolt of lightning. A lucky escape.
Occasional gusts of wind expected in days to come.

Driving through the car wash
splashing and squelching our way through
a sudden downpour of kisses.

An autistic child kicked off a commercial flight
in Belgrade and Portland. A threat in sight followed by a frantic rain of insults.
Mary Poppins forgot her umbrella.

A war veteran soaked to the skin
in a country that doesn’t even begin
to deal with anything, let alone him, soaked to the skin.

The intoxicating earthly scent when rain falls on dry soil.
Stone and fluid flowing in the veins of Greek gods
rain-smelling air, much needed rain in
African and Australian droughts.

Praise rained down on recent grads in
a transition economy changing from central planning
to a free market. Promising rain.
The daunting future, fear moms and dads
waving proudly at their grads.
Rain’s thudding. Hopelessly.

Rain falling on her head like falling in love.
A tap left running.
Rain in my heart. Rain running down my cheeks
on a wet winter’s day when
I thought I lost us.


 

* Originally published at Morality Park