The Courts by Ally Malinenko
-for Daniel Vernola

The tips of my fingers are starting to turn translucent
like an orchid petal
soaked in river water.
I keep coming back to these waterways
each season
like a pilgrimage trying to find that part of me I lost
dashed on the embankment back home.
I wish I was less liquid,
more fire and ice,
something you can gather around
cut into squares and take away with you.
But here I am, in the dawn of another year,
with last years problems resettling in the wake
of so much merriment,
like determined little stones.
Baudelaire had skull lined cemetery paths.
He walked a darkened road
like we did when we were younger, Dan
and now it’s Christmas Eve
and I’m rounding the same old block
listening for those same footsteps I have known for centuries.
We go back down to the abandoned courts,
and talk with our heads thrown back
aghast at all the stars in that little town,
aghast at the way you can feel the earth groan and roll over, sleepily
as if it were nothing more than a giant born from the worlds we invented.
We come back together again in this hallowed place.
You are wrapped in wool and seem almost electric
and I’m still water
parts of me are running off leaving dark stains on the concrete.
Still water, ever since the woods and the waterfall
all those rocks, all my blood
and the tears that he wouldn’t stop crying.
Goodness we were all so in love with each other.
Off in the distance another dog howls on this holy night
and you want to know how I write
the very act of it,
the angry violin strings in my headphones
the flickering candle
the alligator head and photographs.
You want to be in this moment right now, the keys tapping under my fingertips
cause you stopped writing when your journal vanished
in that heartbreaking city and you were too drunk to find it again.
You stopped writing when your dog was stolen.
When your apartment was robbed.
When the bugs marched in a single unstoppable line.
When you severed ties with the only living artist in that city
because alone is one of the few ways you find any peace.
I can understand that. Miles away from you, writing this love note,
I am feeling the same way.
I’m keeping track of the things you have lost, in the years I have been gone.
Out here in the freezing cold night
I promise you that I’m coming back and you feel so thin through that jacket
that for a second I worry,
But you haven’t got me fooled, old friend.
My twin.
You and I,
we are both unbreakable Gods and we know it.
This is just another winter, just another year,
in the longest lifetime we have lived so far.

poems by kelley Davidson


up the stairs, wind on my calves, hello cat.
too cold for september. can it be september already?
in june i lived in a tent with whiskey and hunting for wood every night
and a fire, my dreams danced all around it
you could look over and see them waving, waiting to be invited to share the fifth and the light
tell me a story, dream, and ill then tell you about yourself
now i smell their refried beans, sopa con pollo
hear the mexican traditionals bellowing from next door
and i want to knock on the door and tell them that its okay
that i am homesick, too.

world traveler

think of india: skeletons sitting, shitting in the streets. they are saving their seeds.
think of athens: junky from germany pacing in front of my hotel “american, american?
tight bitch? got some money, bitch? got some fuck?” hes all green lizard skin and
caramelized sweat; i could probably peel his face back and find the devils hand stuck
deep in his head, giving him tourettes, DT’s and the sweats.
think of the sweet swedish bartenders covered in glitter on the islands, stoic smoking
cigarettes pot and pouring shots hiking up their tits for the two euro tips going back
home to identical white box houses heads aching from house music and then taking a
long shower. she wanted to be an actress, you know.
think of these my only bones, me the walking open wound, cerebrum circling around
other souls’ maladies. when how many of them gave a bandage about my cuts, or a nod?

two poems by Diana Rose

Beyond Closed Doors

Scent …clings to a room
Pervacent as cats feet across
mystic night air
It seeps in sleeping minds
with eyes wide shut,
redevouz in midnight hour
while a sleeping dog lies.

See spot run,
the drum beats the tune
and he runs
baying at moon with packs
of wolves in sheeps clothing
Pissing on fences
for circumstantial reason.

Whispered words
centered focus
were more than the fine line
walked down the median
with headlights
blurring vision,

between the sheets
of the fucked
and mind fuck
Beyond the
of reality
fenced framed and fucked again.
American whore
the pictures of her
on the players lists.

More than this
time ticked
sands sifted through fingers
where and when
were we before this..
still whispered
were the words..
warm inviting
like the kiss of Judas.

the slap
with a whip(lash)
jazz chords
rift final notes
beyond all belief
as you walked on down the hall..

The closed door
the tale to be told
in darkness
fucked again

Where The Road Leads

There was a time..
If I closed my eyes I could return
Return to the weekend trips
where life was the top down
my bare pink tipped toes propped up on the dashboard
sunshine on my shoulders that made you high
Didnt matter where we headed
trees drooped down to touch the earth
covering the world with tranquil simplicity
mountain streams rose crashing around us
where an inner tube was enough to
leave me dizzy.. and my laughter made you stop
quoting Kerouac just long enough
to start believing that the road of life
is what we traveled
to find the hope in each other..
Life can be measured in the roads we travel
it cant be seen in the material possessions
or the jobs we have
Life is the heart of the world
through the eyes of another
It can be as spectacular as a waterfall
careful as you scale those rocks..
they can scar your knees should you fall
and the rush
underneath the water
leaves you needing
leaves you wanting
to take a picture and remember
the moment that you knew
that someone else
saw the same thing as you..
That climb to the top
of that mountain.. hush of the world draped in green
the only sound a far off osprey
echoing our thoughts that bounce
from your eyes to mine and back
So many roads upon roads..
At what point do we stop
And just be..
Just breathe
Stop searching the world for completion
traveling each road for inner redemption
that is a long time coming
You cant ask me what road to take
the map I give will be highlighted with my own wants
It might not be the destination you need..
On this earth there are hundreds of roads to take
each one as valid as the last
You have to decide when to stop
changing direction
set the course, and a time of arrival
Cause baby.. only you know
what road makes your heart pound
makes you realize that at long last you are coming
to the end of your journey
and what destination will make your heart
know its home.
There aint no mountain high enough
you can scale to other side
take the path less traveled
search through endless deserts
that will complete you in a way that
says.. I made a difference in this world to
these roads we travel… we break down a lot
put our face in our hands and say shiiit
Where am I … who am I
and what difference does it make
Get out at that gas station
look in the greasy mirror of that bathroom
look long and hard
there is light on at the end of your road
there is someone there that makes you
understand what home is..
You just have to believe.
Me…. I believe in you
I believe in you so much that it matters not what
course you set..
I have traveled the roads less remembered
I have seen lifes endless highway
And the roads I have yet to take can be
with you or without you
It matters not… cause in essence..
Im not going anywhere..
My heart is home.. home and resonating with
life to give you back..
Should you choose
to just arrive.
this last road you take
could be your ride home.
DLR© 2009..all rights reserved.

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