A Place So Great to Be
Walking in the woods on a trail,
A place so great to be.
Hearing the birds and insects sing their different tunes,
And seeing the smoke I would breathe in the cold morning.
The sun is lost in the morning,
And the fog forms an orb all around you.
The drops of water on the leaves rain in slow motion,
And the ground beneath me crunches due to frost.
The morning air is fresh and clean,
And I hear a small stream flow in the distance.
I smell peppermint in the leaves,
And feel the soft scaly bark of evergreen trees beneath my fingertips.
I feel relaxed and relieved on this trail,
And don’t have anything else to do today.
So I’ll just walk in these woods on a trail,
A place so great to be.
Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois
In my dreams
I combine clients
especially women with tattoos
There’s a red neon sign outside my window
My head is close to her chest
She has beautiful breasts
and above them a string of skulls
in homage to the Indian goddess
There’s a Satanic verse tattooed there
but the motion of her breathing makes it
hard to read
I get closer and closer
until my face is pressed between her
beautiful soft breasts
and then I give up my attempts
to decipher the language there
to decipher any language at all
Recovering from Death
recovering from death is hard
one must try and get the lock off the coffin
open up the top and breath in fresh air even when
the body is decaying
dried roses between your fingers
burry and forget
because grieving is not allowed
the dead are not coming back
the living must recover from death
advice being thrown at my head
catch it with my bare hands
not realizing that my hands are bleeding
because the advice was a glass ball
that shattered against my touch
I do not feel the pain
since one does not feel pain
when recovering from death
emotions only at the burial
tears for the one who got their wings clipped
you burry your emotions there
the grieving period had a time limit
the expiration date is stamped on the coffin
yet I must be an oddity
because she visits me in my dreams
she hugged me the other day
she did not have wings
maybe I am not recovered
I have smashed the lock
I have opened the coffin
yet I cannot breath in the fresh air
it feels like poison
burning my lungs
even though I feel nothing
my heart is pushing the decaying poison through my veins
not yet fine
not yet better
not yet recovered
I had just flown in.
I had her on her new mattress,
in her new town,
the lines of sunshine
that I have not begun
that felt the dirt
of the cemetery
held the hand of
too many funerals too count
three best friends
waiting for her
fell in love with a boy
two years younger then her
he has been in the ground
full of hope
full of happiness
full of life
It was the dead of night
When she arrived
With no fight
Left within her
The hospital issued gown
Across one shoulder
Exposing her back
Showing her shape
And her black
There was no signal
On the phone
She sat there
Shut up in here
There is only pain
There is no sun
She’s forgotten the feeling
On her face
The only sound
Was the occasional
Breaking the silence
This is the place
Where hope comes
Though you may try
You will not make it
Out the same
Jean Ann Owens
Little African Girl
Little African girl
Where are you going
Somewhere you’ve never
In a fantasy world
Little African girl
Why are you crying
I don’t want
To go to America
I was born
I want to stay
Where my features blend
My skin color matches
Where my people stand prideful
Where we speak
Then all of us
Grab hold of my hand.
Intricate fingers laced together in holy union.
Place your feelings on your heart
And transplant it into my being.
Teach me about you.
From goals, mistakes, joys, and fears,
Destroy the blurry image I have of you,
With the HD reality of your true self.
Let not my past transgressions,
Define our progression,
From this very moment in time,
As intimacy becomes the sole thing on our minds.
Eyes locked on eyes,
Hearts switched, but still beating,
Hands lost in each other’s,
And minds probing the essence of the beings before us.
This is my canvas.
This blank piece of paper becomes my
Clean slate in which to instill my wisdom upon.
The pen is my paintbrush
And the words are my colors.
They ink out from my brain,
Itch their way to my arm,
Suppress the motors of my hand,
Fulfilling their possession.
Getting pen to paper becomes their obsession
As they begin their confession
To the faithful readers of these words.
With piece complete
The words retreat
Waiting for their chance to repeat
Of another unsuspecting blank canvas.
Swift winds pile increasing pressure on the troubles already on my back.
Thick mean words of disillusionment continue to freeze my feet in its tracks.
The steady diet of fear of failure twirls my stomach in knots.
Depressed ideas are my only thoughts.
The willingness to connect loses its spark,
Day by day,
Clouds of sadness keep the warm sunlight at bay.
Keeper of souls traps mine within its jars,
And swoops out of reach,
Retreating far away into the stars
With soul gone and pain in my heart,
I write this simple poem,
A final letter to loved ones before I depart.
Take heed of my words and please shed no tears
A brave step I must take, my destiny now is clear.
As I step onto the plane and contemplate a possible return,
The pain is too much; I must set fire to bad memories,
Breath painlessly, relax, and watch it all burn.
When I was 8, I became a poet
It was dead winter in the trailer park
Sidewalks slick with sheen
Snow piled to the top of every tin roof
I made a snow man with my 4 year old sister
He was a fat, beady eyed mother fucker with a rotten carrot nose
We made dirty snow angels side by side in the muddy driveway
that never saw a car
Her screams came out of nowhere
and cut the frosty air like shards of glass
Stabbing my my eardrums over and over
The sound muffled only slightly by our puffy earmuffs
I grabbed sis by the hood of her yellow winter jacket
and dragged her inside
She looked like a baby chick
We left our snow encrusteted boots
at the front door
SHE was in trouble again
Her screams were louder in the wooden porch
off the kitchenette where we stood
I tried to hide sis behind the blazing wood furnace
Yellow flames licking the top of the iron grate
would protect her delicate eyes
so she wouldn't see the blood
The river of red life pouring from mama’s head
HER hysterical screams getting louder
Blood gushing from the side of her head as fast
as hot tears pounded my cold cheeks
Sis didn't need to see this
thick oozing gooey liquid in a pool on broken linoleum-
viscous and wet
Seeping through cracks in the floor
injecting itself into every crease and crevice
like junk into hungry veins
My dad ripped my mom's left ear off the day I became a poet
The air smelled like copper and cold