Squib (Second Stanza)
By Anthony Anaxagorou
I’m all epigenetics & indignation minarets & oneiric miracles I’m bending over backwards to kiss my trauma’s forehead all furrowed as if it were my own son dreaming of being believed by the moist leaves inside a gaiwan the job of any
parent is to prepare their children for a world without them fear is the only conclusive list I remember the body mass index of each Byzantine saint the mosque across the road looks so peaceful so photogenic I should get dressed for the pageant decay is out in force look here comes another lockdown with its slow march & febrility a public address blunders into nowhere since then I’ve made it a habit to check the ingredients of my opening gambits weaponizing certainty the glittered spool of a life wound.
By Marc Giacomi
Home is mom
It’s where a sink drips
And the laundry dries
Against a sun that shines
On the ties that bind.
Old with new.
But if only then we knew,
What was false
And what was true?
Home can be just one day.
70 years of days.
Gone faster than a flicker.
A place we can always see
In our minds,
And in our hearts,
But never truly again.
For what remains,
Is the very thing that fades.
And all that fades,
Is the memory that remains.
And that’s when we yearn to go home.
Poems of Home: IV.
Youth To Thaliarchus
By, Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus) (65–8 B.C.)
From the Latin by Sir Stephen Edward de Vere
A SPECTRAL form Soracte stands, snow-crowned,
His shrouded pines beneath their burden bending;
Not now, his rifts descending, Leap the wild streams, in icy fetters bound.
Heap high the logs! Pour forth with lavish hand, O Thaliarchus, draughts of long-stored wine,
Blood of the Sabine vine! To-day be ours: the rest the gods command.
While storms lie quelled at their rebuke, no more
Shall the old ash her shattered foliage shed,
The cypress bow her head, The bursting billow whiten on the shore.
Scan not the future: count as gain each day
That Fortune gives thee; and despise not, boy,
Or love, or dance, or joy Of martial games, ere yet thy locks be gray.
Thine be the twilight vow from faltering tongue; The joyous laugh that self-betraying guides
To where the maiden hides;
The ring from finger half resisting wrung.
By Desirée Jung
It’s evident that I have no
control over my body. Useless to suffer for what is no longer:
I can’t go back. I close my eyes and I understand the aversion:
my crucifixion in your image,
held (nailed at opposite ends) by the death of the body. Sacrifice my desire for yours.
At first the stakes
bordering my gaze seem to
work: wanting within limits. The uncanny happens with the entrance of love, disrupting my frontiers, invading an alleged territoriality.
Unbearable vulnerability to know myself other than in
you: useless attempts to fixate place and anchor empty gazes. Holes without
stakes revealing the ancestral memory of
phantasmatic borders – vain attempts to defend oneself from trespassers.
Savagery of not
belonging: shoulders supporting airborne barriers, images without jurisdiction.
By Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Edward Salter Owen (18 March 1893 – 4 November 1918)
was an English poet and soldier. He was one of the leading poets of the First World War.
Published in 1919
It seemed that out of battle I escaped
Down some profound dull tunnel, long since scooped
Through granites which titanic wars had groined.
Yet also there encumbered sleepers groaned,
Too fast in thought or death to be bestirred.
Then, as I probed them, one sprang up, and stared
With piteous recognition in fixed eyes,
Lifting distressful hands, as if to bless.
And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall,—
By his dead smile I knew we stood in Hell.
With a thousand fears that vision's face was grained;
Yet no blood reached there from the upper ground,
And no guns thumped, or down the flues made moan.
“Strange friend,” I said, “here is no cause to mourn.”
“None,” said that other, “save the undone years,
The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours,
Was my life also; I went hunting wild
After the wildest beauty in the world,
Which lies not calm in eyes, or braided hair,
But mocks the steady running of the hour,
And if it grieves, grieves richlier than here.
For by my glee might many men have laughed,
And of my weeping something had been left,
Which must die now. I mean the truth untold,
The pity of war, the pity war distilled.
Now men will go content with what we spoiled.
Or, discontent, boil bloody, and be spilled.
They will be swift with swiftness of the tigress.
None will break ranks, though nations trek from progress.
Courage was mine, and I had mystery;
Wisdom was mine, and I had mastery:
To miss the march of this retreating world
Into vain citadels that are not walled.
Then, when much blood had clogged their chariot-wheels,
I would go up and wash them from sweet wells,
Even with truths that lie too deep for taint.
I would have poured my spirit without stint
But not through wounds; not on the cess of war.
Foreheads of men have bled where no wounds were.
“I am the enemy you killed, my friend.
I knew you in this dark: for so you frowned
Yesterday through me as you jabbed and killed.
I parried; but my hands were loath and cold.
Let us sleep now. . . .”
by Gaele Sobott
to Rosa Luxemburg and the many other women comrades who have fought and are fighting for a just world.
their artillery feigns strength
my woman comrade
a bee hovers over your lips
heart-felt pollen tumbles from its legs onto your skin
with rapid insect wingbeats
the tiny time traveller departs
to the non-future
where dust soldiers hunger for chaos
and lightless acacia pods grow
restless in sleep
my woman comrade
your scarlet finger
your slim ferocity
repulsed the frontiers of authoritarianism
that pervade our broken forests
dear Rosa the armed struggle has left
gaping holes in your throat laughter sags
boots thump bird messages are scattered
and the whale-coloured sky rains burned sweetbreads
my dear woman comrade
within this entire wasteland of existence
our answer to the artillery is heard
louder and louder
through the damp dark
I was, I am, I shall be!
Note: Reference is made to the phrase, ‘the entire hopeless wasteland of existence is heard in this damp night’ written by Rosa Luxemburg in a letter to Sophie Liebknecht, The Letters of Rosa Luxemburg, Verso, 2011, p.455 and ‘I was, I am, I shall be!’ -- the final words in “Order Prevails in Berlin”, Rosa Luxemburg’s last known editorial published in Rote Fahne, 14 January 1919