Yvonne

Contributor Biography

First poetry editor of two pioneer feminist magazines, Aphra and Ms., Yvonne has received several awards including NEAs for poetry (1974/1984), a Leeway for fiction (2003), and a Pushcart Prize (v. 6). Recent anthologies include: Black in the Middle (Belt), Horror USA: California (Soteira), Home: An Anthology (Flexible), Quiet Diamonds 2019/2018 (Orchard Street), 161 One-Minute Monologues from Literature (Smith and Kraus). Yvonne is the author of an epic trilogy: Iwilla Soil, Iwilla Scourge, Iwilla Rise (Chameleon Productions). Selected publications can be accessed at www.iwilla.com.

PILGRIMAGE, 2009

 

  

Memory’s door key sticks                                                                                              Black flies creep like August sweat                                                                              What sleeping dog dead?

Grave sweet powder air                                                                                                Ten candles stand guard to bloom                                                                                My dry voice thickens  

Every faucet drips                                                                                                        Rust dried and caked in the joints                                                                                Secret puddles clot
 
Splinters draw blood                                                                                                    Lead paint crackles breath and sits                                                                              Still muscles curdle

A life Daddy left                                                                                                            Despair coats the dull bare floor                                                                                  Love’s grime cannot melt

 

Mounds of sour sheets                                                                                                  Thrown down the linen closet                                                                                        Under the mice stairs

 

Mother’s crazy house.                                                                                                    I, the witness, never free.                                                                                                Forgive me. Forgive.

Author's Note:

This poem appeared in Is It Hot In Here Or Is it Just Me?, published under Social Justice Anthologies, the publishing affiliate of Beautiful Cadaver Project Pittsburgh.

Yang YingJia

Contributor Biography

Yang YingJia lives in Singapore. Having a quiet passion for writing, she hopes to publish her first collection of poems within this lifetime. Currently, she is actively involved in preventive mental health work at a tertiary hospital. It is also her aspiration to build awareness about depression through her poetry.

Reset

Like bad amnesia vanishing
it rushes and hits like an unplanned 
drive into a sea of butterflies.

Dispersed. 

 

And then the tears.

What 
am I crying for? 
Loss of a future,
loss of a soulmate, 
loss of the integral support that kept a flimsy 
model of myself together of which,
without, 
I lay, 
a pile of light plastic pieces. 
Unformed

.

 

The baby breaths you gave have discoloured
the dust clings like cobwebs, 
soft layers, impossible to separate without also breaking 
apart the buds. 
In some sense I have allowed sediments to gather, 
over and over, untouched. 

Is it too late to say I want to go back— 
go back to where we haven’t been able to go, 
would it be fair 
to plead, please, please this time 
could we displace, crease after crease and see
if underneath all we’ve ever buried away
could we 
begin again?