My Voice. A Poem & Artwork by Kelly Sargent

My Voice



I am Deaf. 

My fingers speak. 


A coiffed paintbrush in my grasp, 

my voice streaks turquoise and magenta 

across a parched canvas. 

Vowels coo through thirsty linen.


Click-clacking keys with my mother tongue, 

I chew hard consonants

and spit them out. 

Sour, a scathing sonnet can be at dusk.


Fingertips pave slick exclamations, 

punctuated by nails sinking low into clamminess.  

I sculpt hyperboles.

Kelly Sargent is an author and artist whose works, including a Best of the Net nominee, have appeared in more than forty literary publications. A poetry chapbook entitled Seeing Voices: Poetry in Motion is forthcoming (Kelsay Books, 2022). A book of modern haiku entitled Lilacs & Teacups is also forthcoming, and a haiku recently recognized in the international Golden Haiku contest is on display in Washington, D.C. She serves as the creative nonfiction and an assistant nonfiction editor for two literary journals. She also reviews for an organization whose mission is to make visible the artistic expression of sexual violence survivors.
You can find her at https://www.kellysargent.com/

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

VERISIMILITUDE. 5 Poems by Askold Skalsky

KEYS IN A ROW  
 
Perhaps someone
will play a melancholy
keyboard piece as I am
leaving, and, stopping
to listen, I’ll have a vision
of what is to come if I
linger, if I walk up
to the player, wait,
then ask some pertinent
question with an eager
mien, the seconds gone
when I would have been
outdoors in the clear,
the moment interrupted
with a careless insufficiency,
the scattered patterns
of my life converging
into a broken string,
a clappered wheel
on which the hours
tick and dance to
their inoperable end
 
***
 
to be released from a long
slow slough, much of it
impenetrable like the circle
of a dream manifest as reality,
frightful and avoidable,
a bag in a corridor laced
with shadows and squalor,
which the mere eye of me
is afraid to undo
 
***
 
moving through
the veins, a fire-
ball with dim
obbligatos and
dark copper
bangs, like old
radiator pipes
when the steam
hammers at high
velocity into their
joints, warming
the room and
almost waking
the sleeper from
his sleep
 
***
 
here in this morning’s morning
self-forgotten sullen twang
comes a star gilded and silver,
climbing still like the pine
branches tipped with needle-
frantic green, yes, caught
like a tiny chip on the great
waist of some spectre surface
emerging into the dissolving dark.  
 
LANDSCAPE IN FALLEN LIGHT, WITH CHILDREN
 
Just an unimportant place,
radiant and ordinary,
deserving the utmost scriptory,
with golden quags
up to the knees,
the sun blotting the lough
like streaks of silver haze
settling in a quay.
No need for a raveled sky
of quizzical significance,
the wrangling heads
foundering in the streets,
questing the unending sop
of memory and imprecation
to put life into the big words,
immiserating the ivory dungeon,
as one antinomian calls it,
reduced to bah, to babbling ooze,
slightly ecstatic now and then,
what is preserved
when meaning is deflated,
page after page, of invisibility,
of pity for hope lost
in hell’s sunken bolgias,
or the faces strapped
to the skullbones
of the starving young. 
 
 NOW THEN, THE OPEN EYE  
 
August’s close
but I already feel
the solitary cold,
a sleepless place
and zero of the night,
like an infinitive
without an end
and half reluctant
to begin. But solitude
is just a postlude
to the now where all
the wrongs set in,
a moment’s atom
out of kilter,
out of being true,
where finally the heart
may intermit its beat
with careless equanimity
or grave abandonment
like a nimbus
with its watery crystals
of deep ice,
washing the sorrows
from your face,
from all the lineaments
of being you.
 
 
VERISIMILITUDE
 
                   After a passage from a novel by Virginia Woolf
 
Somewhere in the middle
I recall a brewer’s cart
and the genial narrator
describing the gray horses 
that had upright bristles
of straw stuck in their tails
like sprouting plumes
above the small brown daisies
peeping from their haunches’ clefts.
And a woman, seeing
this slipstream brook
of burblings through her mind,
immediately brightens,
and sorrow drops away
like a feathered colander
sifting the prismatic richness
of her life, kindling with equine
pleasure an infinite hubble-bubble
of mysterious commotion
out of the  pernicious flurries
of gone time, a lollop on horsetail
streams with straw-thatched coronets,
whimsical and vagulous,
like sea-green sprites,
bedraggled by happiness
and blessed with silly dreams.
 
PROBLEM, SOLUTION, ETC.
 
Her academic pedigree
was impressive--Swarthmore,
Columbia and the Sorbonne.
But toward her hundredth year
she confronted her biggest source
of perplexity and vexation,
the state of being weary
and restless through lack of interest,
and began her day
with crossword puzzles,
then the game shows on TV.
Did she return to these
as the day continued to impair
itself by attrition?
Ramakrishna used to rebuke
card-playing oldsters—
Had they nothing better to do
on the verge of their greatest change
of outward form or appearance?
Are crosswords any better?
Should Kurtz have done puzzles
in the dark,  filling words into a pattern
of numbered squares in answer
to correspondingly numbered clues
to prevent facing the abyss
before him, the memories in him?
What is a six-letter word
for a painful emotion
compounded of loathing and fear?

Bio: Originally from Ukraine, Askold Skalsky has published poems in over 300 online and print periodicals in the United States, Canada, England, Ireland, mainland Europe, Turkey, Australia, and India. He is the recipient of two Individual Artist Awards in Poetry from the Maryland State Arts Council, and is the founding editor of the literary magazine Hedge Apple. A first book of poems, The Ponies of Chuang Tzu, was published in 2011 by Horizon Tracts in New York City. He is currently at work on several poetry projects, including a poetry cycle based on Gertrude Stein’s Tender Buttons. A book of poetry, Shapeless Works of Partial Contemplation, is due to be published by Ephemeral Arts Press in November.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Peach Delphine The Blackwater River Poems

it was not the arc of a star-

Boat tail grackles wove a river of possibilities
where each scar became eye, it was not a song 
of our grandmothers from beyond pines, 
 buried in flesh, bone close, blade thin, what must be 
carried, weight of singing, of the gone, an edge,
 tasting of blood, navel oranges, pie lemons, 

calamondin, an incandescence living
 in my flesh, glyphs of their own light, their own
 life, divination begins with my shoulder blade,
another bone tossed on the pile, a pyre
stacking itself into a ceremony of absences,

without moonlight desire floats with owls,
glide path of palms, asphalt, gravel, we are such,
an aggregate laid down for the passage of others,
so many carcasses trundled into pavement,

with the random divination of bird tracks,
as day burns, we burn, as ash reveals, stars
unfold, as stragglers croak their way out
to the rookery, we remain cindered, land bound,
a reliquary of unattained salvation, a singing
whittled down, stacked fatwood desiring flame,
all our dreams arrive here, shore of burning,
songs mangrove verdant, tangled in drifts of shell.


-Dog has a pumpkin head-

it was the season of rhymes,
pig killing, wood burning, whiskey,
you said your brother wouldn't care
who I was, true enough as he only spoke
to the dog and the stove, his back porch

navel oranges, kumquats,
cabbage palms, a bougainvillea blood
dark flowering, eating canned peaches
fished from a cooler of tall boys,

you said I was good enough for your bed,
the back of your bike, biscuits at your kitchen
table, second drawer in your dresser, ''Sit, 
so listen, there's no redemption,
 just atonement, and there's no end to that."

Sour gum flowering gathered
up into honey, we chewed the comb
as if adopted by bears, living off
saw palmetto berries and grubs,
or the other flesh,

thorn of my tongue, word pierced,
we are without, not of, not
within time, hinged sky, a mollusk
drying out between tides, barnacled
wind bent, current woven, taste skin,
taste wind, taste salt, how blade manifests
a dream life, tongue balanced, taut with lace
of scars, a sargassum float of entanglement,
small crabs, sea turtles, it was the season
of arrivals, no hint yet of the horizon
closing upon us, the other fruit
ripening on the tree, absence
overtaking, hand
over fist.

  -Pithlachascotee River -

Some Sunday she said from the kitchen to the breezeway,
"Suffer not a witch", left before  dinner,
walked  to the landing, where possibilities
survive immersion, current relentlessly flowing, 
took the skiff downriver, followed a creek
into the mangrove, abandoned habitation, learned
tide, names of wind, to thatch with palmetto
to polish the blade, circular motion of sharpening, 
stone of susurration honing the heart, hatchet of tongue 
riving chunks of fatwood to feed hands of flame, cupped 
with each evening, there is a singing on the breeze, 
a litany of pollination, a triumph of flowering,
 night fills my ears as sparks of fireflies float 
over the verdure of burning, praise laced 
with woodsmoke, wave summoned tide 
manifests this form, an expression of sea,
 a liver of possibilities, a cloud filled lung,
breath of a thicker atmosphere, ponderous 
flight as form reveals itself to sky.

Sun folded away in its blue coverlet, you cannot drink 
from this broken cup of sky spilling moon, skillet on the fire, clouds stack on the horizon, 
spoonbill stretching wing
 into shade, egrets lifting over mangrove, we lived
 for a while on black coffee and bacon, shouldering 
a river door wind walks through, trailing night and a glory 
of stars, we gathered the taste of names, memory is flesh, 
trees  speak of it, questioned which half holds the spoon,
which half lifts the bowl, which eye is on the horizon, 
weather coiling beyond curve of sea.

As fireflies are shards of air cracked by lightning, 
we name ourselves that sea may know us, 
salt tasting salt, coiled into wave of remembrance, 
the whistle and click each song must pass through
to reach open water where emerald shimmers 
into cobalt, lifting such light as we can from all this
 broken, edges balanced on fingertips, a divide between
 what glitters  and what sinks quietly, some days my dress
is burlap, sometimes a hank of sea borrowed
from wave, tide uncoiled from one hand the other dipped
 into river, filtering a current of unintended sorrow, 
where the gone has lifted onto  breeze, silence feathers
its nest beneath tongue, magnolia opening slowly 
with morning or  question swallowing word, sometimes
I am spoonbill, head down wading,  a roseate flowering
 in an unnamed forest striding into darkness, sometimes
 there is a face in the mirrored waters, sometimes
 it is mine, sometimes a voice, wave lifted, sometimes 
we speak but the voice is never mine, face of water,
 voice of wind, a sound from the edge of all things. 

Peach Delphine is a queer poet from Tampa, Florida. Former cook infatuated with what remains of the undeveloped Gulf coast and blackwater rivers.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

The Inventory Poems by John Okey

Steps

These days,
sequential in their order,
random in their events.

Yet,
I am supposed to come through
	every 24 hours
With some sort of understanding,
a plan for the next day,
and the same every day after.

What am I supposed to do?
Control the guessing…
	Suppress the panic…
It’d be more human
	to be a lab rat
or a lamb
	in a Chicago slaughterhouse.

I am stupid with my intelligence.
I sequence,
Collate,
Numerate,
Alphabetize,
Chronicle,
Dewey Decimal, 
Periodic Table,
even square root…

All fucking useless.
More importantly,
it all misses the fucking point.

Inventory

I am the poet,
a disaster in stanza,
the upside-down verse,
enjoying one good mistake
	after the next.
Turn in each ugly line 
sloppier than the last.

The pen is a weak sword
	against suicidal woes.
I scribble nothings across
	scraps of paper.
Really anything I can get
	my hands on,
then lose before I get home.

My attempts at bringing
	the dark side to the outside.

Double-Checking the Inventory

No shine.
No polish.
No pretense.

I am dirty and unkempt.
I from when I should smile.
I am a disaster in every
	human way.

Lacking popular respectability,
I revel in my ill-repute.

My style is blue jeans and t-shirts.
My attitude is to smirk
	with a hint of alcohol.

I am the question mark
and the exclamation point.
The means without an end.

Final Inventory

As a sane man,
I am a catastrophe.
As an insane man,
I have it rather tied together.

Bio
Okey is a forty-four-year-old bakery employee. He has written poetry since he was a teenager. It was during the pandemic that he finally decided to publish his work. A novel, This Here Night Life…, and a poetry collection, Back to Masturbating Monkeys and God’s Plan, are available on Amazon. These poems are reprints from his poetry collection.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

The Cybernetic Lullaby. A Poem by Nolo Segundo

The Cybernetic Lullaby


They sing softly to us at 
Every click of the mouse—
use me, I'm here for you,
only you, in the entire 
universe will I serve….

And we lay enraptured 
as they bring us the world,
knowledge the wise men
of history never had, and
ease, lots of ease to save 
us time and trouble. Soon 
we cannot live without them,
the thought of it too mean.
Without them we would loose 
Touch with our friends, jobs,
Even our money might wander 
If we cannot watch it daily.

However did our ancestors 
Survive without an I Phone?

Part II

I read on my laptop today—
Automation is making us dumber,
Ineffective, even maybe impotent.
Perhaps it's a conspiracy by that secret
Society, the computer brotherhood.
(Do you really believe your Apple is 
Innocent and IBM is not plotting?)

Or maybe we should just blame
Human sloth, that siren call of 
Sheer damn laziness which can 
Lure the best of us to a quiet doom.

A simple proof: hand a twenty to a clerk
And ask him to make change without
Looking to the machine for succor.
That blank, innocent look he gives you—
"Why me?",  he seems to be saying, 
And you can't help but pity him a bit. 
He is, after all, a victim of mass education.


There are worse victims: 
Airliners wildly crashing,
Doctors killing their patients,
Nuclear power plants going
BOOM! And killing the land
For an eon or two, or three.

How like little children we were!
Thinking these machines would
Be our slaves, sans the brutality. 
But it is we who are chained by 
The zeros and ones, we who are
Thinking less, creating cheaper, 
Settling into a cybernetic fog.

Part III: When Androids Dream

When we finally build them
(and it will not be long)
Will androids finally lead us
all to nirvana, a world of peace, 
leisure, and endless wealth?

Could any hell be worse?
For that day will be when 
We lose purpose, and soon
Perhaps the very will to live.

When the androids dream
(and they will dream, 
because we will make them 
to be like us, for we have 
always been a vain species),
will they not dream of sky
and soaring free of the land,
free of the weak, sad humans
they serve without accordance?
                                                                                                                   
Then, when these humanface 
Machines begin dreaming in 
Daylight, they will see no need
For their progenitors, and those 
Of us left living as shells sans
Struggle or pain or conflict, in
An existence sooo boring, will
Doubtless welcome our end. 

Nolo Segundo, pen name of retired teacher [America, Japan, Taiwan, Cambodia] L.J. Carber, 74, has in his 8th decade become a published poet in 48 online/in print literary magazines in the US, UK, Canada, Romania, Portugal, and India; in 2020 a trade publisher released a book-length collection titled ‘The Enormity Of Existence’ and in 2021 a 2nd book, ‘Of Ether And Earth‘ [all royalties going to Doctors Without Borders]. A beautiful and intelligent Chinese woman has been married to him for 41 years, proving that miracles do happen.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Heidegger Looks at the Moon. Collected Poems. RW Haynes. Reviewed by Robin Ouzman Hislop

Heidegger Looks at the Moon is the latest volume of poetry by RW Haynes, who is well known to us at PLT (Poetry Life & Times), where as well as being Interviewed, his various previous works,
as well his poems have been hosted. Haynes is an individual of many abilities, a scholar of Greek language, he is versed in the Classics, a playright, novelist, a biographer on the Texan Playright Hoorton Foote & poet, he teaches at A&M International University of Texas, Laredo, USA, where he’s been a lecturer for the last 30 years in Anglo Saxon Literature, Dramatics in Chaucer, Shakespeare & Ibsen’s plays amongst other activities.

It is not surprising, perhaps, that his poetics are in the classicist metric style and form. Almost inevitably, I find, we see, surrupetitiously appearing in verses a tightening of form in Shakespearean vogue. I think he will be the first one to admitt that he is almost in bondage to the sonnet and drawn by the fascination and challenge of being able to render a vast scope of vision into such a compact and condensed form. Also what we learn from Haynes is his overwhelming admiration for theater, but more so for the actual actors who perform theater, he literarily stands in awe and reverence of them as artists in their medium. I mention this because it is reflected, I believe, in his works as a poet, which introduces many varied persona as mediums for his poetic voice. Of course both history and place, he is from the deep south USA, figure extensively in his writing, an example features in his sonnet Downtown Waco. Midnight. Heidegger Looks at the Moon. In it’s opening line The Bush Library really ought to be here! Apparently Waco was on the list but it got removed to Dallas ‘The loss of the Library was the worst blow to hit the city since the 1953 Waco Tornado killed 114 people’ he comments in another text.

I might say that he views as the same conflicts and conditions of the human species over time as intrinsic to their existence, passion, love, hate, grief, despair from antiquity to the present are fundamental in the human make up. And his poems intensifiy in a contemporary idiom and context this phenomena. Having said all that, I would add, that his poems by no means make for easy reading, if the reader believes it can just pick up the volume and flipantly peruse it for a couple of hours and come away gratified, it’s in for another think. It is a work that you have to go back to again and again. These are poems that demand you give them attention, that you work at them, because in their own genre, they are masterfully crafted. I personally found in reading them, that just at the moment you feel most comfortable with the verses, stanzas, you are saying to yourself, yes I am with it, what appears to be a harmless snug line tucked away in a stanza rivets you with its complexity and plunges you into new depths, which is what a poem should do, imo.

The very title Heidegger Looks at the Moon, Heidegger is a complex philosopher and Haynes believes that poetry should be philosophical (in this I share his viewpoint) he believes in the etymology of the word Sophia, as the love of wisdom ( a hope, which I would also like to share in). Heidegger thought of humans as linguistic beings, language is the house of being, but he also feared that language could be our own entrapment, that the way we spoke about a certain object or event made it into what it was and also alienated us from what it really is. This of course is a great simplification but I think i could say that his concern was that instead of talking about nature, we end up only talking about ourselves, which prevents us from being activated, acted upon or impacted by anything, which in the end makes us become – the living dead. So accordingly, if philosophy (wisdom) is the task of poetry, it must be to awaken us by the use of poetic language to recover the world which is ours and to which we belong. Haynes poetry in its idiom both ancient and modern, in it’s scope and intensity, it’s range of variety and mood, in its quest, is perhaps a kindling beacon towards that lost light. Below are three poems selected by the editor from the reviewed work.

HEIDEGGER LOOKS AT THE MOON R. W. HAYNES w w w . f i n i s h i n g l i n e p r e s s . c o m
$ 1 9 . 9 9 / P O E T R Y

Glad to be a Stranger

It is good to be a stranger where society
Reflects like twisted mirrors the solipsistic
Projections of emptiness, grinning foolishly,
Mentally overpowered by the simplistic,
Empowered by gadgets and electricity,
Delighted by dim superficiality.
The lotus-eaters’ half-stoned colloquy
Achieves at best a specious affectation
Sustaining complacent juvenility
Inflated greatly by bogus education,
So nothing should make anyone want to be
More familiar in this situation:
Regret is best where mindlessness prevails
And humanity overwhelmingly fails.

Barking and Sparking

Dogs do play politics, but their machinations
Laughably  proclaim their devious conniving
More transparent than the representations
We think necessary for surviving.
Applying, though, proportionality,
Envisioning an abler evaluation
Viewing us likewise, does our acuity
Do us more credit than the canine situation?
Cerberus! Are two heads better than one
When both are empty? Are all fools the same
When all is finally said, or barked, and done
And final justice weighs our praise and blame?
Is the difference between eloquence and barking
A mere matter of a few more neurons sparking

Black Friday in the Texas Thrift Store

The man with the outraged voice
Gripped a black plastic clock
Shaped like a modernist pretzel.
It looked like it had been found behind
A burnt-out garage, after too much time.
“The price is too high,” he complained.
“And the time is wrong,” I replied,
With more sympathy than intended.
“No, no,” he said, “the time is fine.
All it needs is batteries to work.
But just look at the shape of it:
I think it’s perfect for time, don’t you?”
“Um, yas,” I philosophized slowly,
“I see what you mean. Time and pretzels,
You’re quite right. But do you think it works?”
He glanced sharply at me. “Of course it works.
The shape is right, the time is right,
It’s just the price that’s wrong.”
“But everything’s half off today,” I tried,
Not that the honor of the Texas Thrift Store
Mattered greatly to me, but time still does.
“It doesn’t matter, does it?” he complained.
“The time is fine, but still the price is wrong.”

R. W. Haynes, Professor of English at Texas A&M International University, has published poetry in many journals in the United States and in other countries. As an academic scholar, he specializes in British Renaissance literature, and he has also taught extensively in such areas as medieval thought, Southern literature, classical poetry, and writing. Since 1992, he has offered regular graduate and undergraduate courses in Shakespeare, as well as seminars in Ibsen, Chaucer, Spenser, rhetoric, and other topics. In 2004, Haynes met Texas playwright/screenwriter Horton Foote and has since become a leading scholar of that author’s remarkable oeuvre, publishing a book on Foote’s plays in 2010 and editing a collection of essays on his works in 2016. Haynes also writes plays and fiction. In 2016, he received the SCMLA Poetry Award ($500) at the South Central Modern Language Association Conference In 2019, two collections of his poetry were published, Laredo Light (Cyberwit) and Let the Whales Escape (Finishing Line Press).

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

Three Poems Telos, Tabula Rasa & Algor by Carl Scharwath

Telos

Two evening lovers’ echoes
In you forgotten dreams and
memories of essence.

Touch wordlessly in a greater optimism.

Waves of summer morn
Under a cloudless sky with
flickering lights of desire.

Turning like a dancer alone on the stage of life

The evening leaves turn after 
Their first death and sleep
In the place of forgotten Gods.

Does it break you apart to see the expectation so muddled?

Tabula Rasa

I saw the ethos of a
generation destroyed-
mourning the philosophers
In their artful vision.

The sense datum clouds
with cries of the 
nymphs welcoming 
new world dawns.

Mentality is, in its way forming,
a sign of hopeful intelligence.
Knavish roadblocks obstruct
triumphant returns to Arcadia.

A sterism fills my sight
As the false memories
Of a partial Utopia
Flood my soul.

Algor

Like a winter landscape fearful
Of revealing what lies underneath
And I-one minute
Adrift from myself.

Opening up to you
Is as easy as breathing
In the quest for completion
Of a new threshold.

Poetry is a constructed conversation
On the frontier of dreaming.
I cannot help but freeze-and
Scrutinize the ideology doctrine.

Carl Scharwath, has appeared globally with 170+ journals selecting his poetry, short stories, interviews, essays, plays or art. Two poetry books Journey to Become Forgotten (Kind of a Hurricane Press) and Abandoned (Scars Tv) have been published. His new book “The Playground of Destiny” (Impspired Press 8/21) features prose, poems and photography. His first photography book was published by Praxis in Africa. His photography was also exhibited in the Mount Dora Center for The Arts and Leesburg Center for The Arts galleries. Carl is the art editor for Minute Magazine (USA,) has a monthly interview column with ILA Magazine, a competitive runner, and a 2nd degree black- belt in Taekwondo.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)

A Fucked up Life. A Bilingual Poem & Translation from Spanish by Vera Moreno

A fucked up life

living in Zurich to work in a small town
working in a small town to live in Zurich

everything for
a small retirement benefit

everything for
tomorrow´s future



every single morning the alarm o´clock

                                 the train leaves at 6.09

                                 the train leaves at 6.09


teaching three modules when the rest of teachers

teach two

wishing to change that


                          and as the cuckoo, open your beak,
                          open your beak, but nothing changes

getting up again
taking the same seat at 6.05

sleeping on the same train seat
on the way to work
sleeping standing
on your way back 

                to yawn at the wrong timing
                to yawn at the wrong timing

getting to the small town exhausted
getting  back to Zurich      more  than exhausted

knowing that today is a piece of gold for 
the retirement benefit, the retirement benefit
the precious  golden retirement benefit
cooking not so much ´cos the lack of sleeping

 DON´T DREAM
                                                         DON´T DREAM much
                                                         DON´T DREAM
                                                         DON´T DREAM much

a fucked up life
a fucked up life

living in Zurich to work in a small town
working in a small town to live in Zurich

having a reduced future for
a little retirement benefit in Switzerland

                             having a reduced morning
                             to sleep or not to sleep
                             to sleep or not to sleep
                             never dreams, never dreams
                                             sleeping on a train, sleeping on a train 
                                                but never do it, but never do it       in class
                            
Can´t- get - out, can´t get out, can´t get out

                             from the clock, 		from the cow, 
                             from the knife,  		from the cheese
                             from the Swiss       	fucking snow,
                             				fucking snow, 
                             					           can´t get out
                             from fucking Switzerland
                             				
							from fucking Swiss 
							white clean tyranny.



Vera Moreno
from The broken bodies´ fitness center
César Simón Poetry Award 2019
Una vida jodida

vivir en Zurich para trabajar en un pequeño pueblo
trabajar para vivir en Zurich
tener una pequeña pensión, 
para el día de mañana

 cada mañana el despertador
			           el tren sale a las 6.09
                                
impartir tres módulos cuando el resto imparte dos
querer cambiar, 			     
                                   y como el cuco, abrir la boca

levantarse de nuevo
sentarse a las 6.05 en ese tren


dormir sentada
dormir de pie
dormir en el tren de ida  
dormir en el tren de vuelta

                                              bostezar a destiempo

llegar al pueblo exhausta
llegar a Zurich exhausta
sabiendo que el día cotiza en bolsa o en la pensión
cocinar poco por el sueño

NO 
                                                                          soñar

una vida jodida
vivir en Zurich para trabajar en un pequeño pueblo
trabajar para vivir en Zurich

tener un mañana reducido
una pensión pequeña en Suiza

					tener una mañana reducida
					               dormir o no dormir
						       dormir o no dormir
                                                en el tren sí, en clase no

no-poder-salir 
			   del reloj, la vaca, la navaja, el queso
                                                                          la nieve



Vera Moreno
Poema procedente de el gimnasio de los rotos
Premio de Poesía César Simón 2019

Vera Moreno (Madrid, 1972). A multifaceted writer, teacher, rhapsodist, and cultural activist. She loves performance and videopoems.

She holds a Master Degree in Artistic, Literary and Cultural Studies from the Autonomous University of Madrid; and a Sociology and Political Sciences Degree from the Complutense University of Madrid. She also did Women´s studies at Utrecht University in NL.

In 2013 she was recognized as a New Voice by the feminist publishing House Torremozas (Madrid). Vera Moreno was published by Amargord publisher in a double poetry book called The whole orange (La naranja entera) in 2016. Three years later, she won the César Simón poetry reward at the University of Valencia with the poems book called The broken bodies´ fitness center (El gimnasio de los rotos). Next year a new book is coming.

Some of her texts and poems have been translated into Dutch, Esperanto and English.

As a cultural activist she created in 2001 a innovative cultural radio space of one minute lenght called Europe for Culture on Europe FM national radio station. In 2012 Vera Moreno designed and coordinated participative literary events called Literary Moondays (Lunes literarios) at the Rivas city hall – centro cultural del ayuntamiento de Rivas, and co-founder of the poetry channel on youtube Poesía a domicilio / Poetry delivery, with the great Dominican poet Rosa Silverio (2021).
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Robin Ouzman Hislop is Editor of Poetry Life and Times at Artvilla.com ; You may visit Aquillrelle.com/Author Robin Ouzman Hislop about author & https://poetrylifeandtimes.com See Robin performing his work Performance (University of Leeds)