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Posts Tagged ‘Claudia Serea Rocks From The Black Sea’


The first poem in the issue is “Lettres D’Amour,” by Brittany Ackerman, a prose poem about two people not meeting due to reluctance, various misunderstandings and mere chance. “You came because I never answered your letters, all your letters. I had asked you so long ago to stop writing. I did this by not writing back. I had asked by not saying.” Were the two once lovers? Is the one stalking the other? It’s a bit mysterious, but enjoyably written.

In “Past Tense,” Katherine Gekker relates a story of loss, in three brief stanzas. “You begin to speak of me / in the past tense… As if to know and to let go / are simultaneous events.” A somber poem, leaving a deep resonance.

“Remnants,” by Christopher Todd Anderson, is a dense poem, but worth exploring. “Mixed weather. Shale-gray banks of clouds / obscure the horizon, then fragment overhead” it begins, and just rolling the words around gives a taste like burgundy. But then comes the shock of the next stanza. “I find the crooked foreleg of a deer hanging / from a… sapling… hooked at the gristled remnant of a knee.” Just like that, we are now examining the strange and macabre ways of humankind. The narrator tells tales of other findings out in nature, reflects on a daughter, and finishes more wary than at the beginning. A fine poem.

Simon Perchik gives us the poem “*”. Which, if you have followed him, has been the name of a number of his poems over the years. Anyway, this iteration of the poem starts out fun: “More restless than usual this nail / is eating its prey :the wall.” I like that brain twister. How can a nail be more restless than usual? How can it eat the wall? The nail evidently holds up a painting of a woman, who also does not stay in place: “a make-shift ritual / where she is passed wall to wall.” A truly strange little poem, worth a few reads.

Finally, let me mention “Rocks From The Black Sea,” by Claudia Serea. “Kids always like to pick rocks, /
and we did, each year, / carrying pounds of heavy mementos.” It’s a quiet poem about memories, returning, and family. “I remembered how my father told me / he picked up some rocks and dirt / from his parents’ grave.” It leaves us with a sadness and yearning and, at the very end, a bit of hope.

Here’s the link to the magazine: http://www.applevalleyreview.com/

Peace in poetry,

P M F Johnson

My eBook of poems, Against The Night, a sweet, rueful look at love in a long marriage, is available on Amazon, and at other fine e-retailers.

Related blog posts:

The New Yorker – Apr 2 2018

Convergence – Winter 2017

Blue Collar Review – Fall, 17

 

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