About the year 310 the Emperor Constantine established Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire. Julian, who reigned from 361-363, reestablished paganism as the observed faith. He wrote a number of philosophic works in defense of the old religion and also confutations of certain Christian doctrines. After he perished in a battle in 363, the new religion was restored in state. During his reign large groups of monks attempted to ravage some pagan temples.
The Julianic Manifest No. 1
Hard words like bullets hit me
searing comments tear my skin
mute me , take away my power
your anger flails me.
With one word your scorn burns me
knocks me to the ground
wounds me deeply
searing my soul
and it never heals
I am wound upon wound
scar upon scar, building up
layer upon hurting layer
somewhere inside deep inside
in a tiny dark little corner
my soul lies curled , furled
you say you know me , do you know me ?
I don’t know me, I know a thousand me’s
every day I act out a thousand personas
trying to find the one that fits the moment
trying to find the one that pleases the world,
you, myself, friends
sometimes I reflect back what is shown to me, thrown at me
good or bad
aggressive or loud
weak, soft ,emotional
maybe it works better being …
if I reflect you then
maybe you will like it better
if I am more you than me
but these people aren’t me
they are all just shards of the mirror of me
that’s fracturing with the pain of my life
my hurt , my sorrows, my tears
my wastes, my losses, my losing
my cheating myself
she’s crying out that child, that soul
she’s not gone forever
I see glimpses of her all the time
when I push aside the debris
most times though I leave her be
maybe to protect her
maybe because she is so long gone
such a distant memory
that I am losing the reality of her
maybe cos I still don’t know who
I want to be when I grow up
maybe cos it’s easier to blitz out,
avoid, compartmentalize, be the me
I am in the given moment, just exist
respond / react, just do what is expected
damp down the little sparks, one moment, over-react the next
anesthetize, avoid , procrastinate,
just be an amoeba
so who is the amoeba now, her or me
but she won’t leave me alone this soul
she has a siren’s call, this Pandora soul of
She cries to me for release
do I let her out ?
do I dare
who will love her, hate her the most
you or me?
do you care?
Copyright © Gillian Stokes 31 May 2009
end of day
waves caressing shore
master artist painting sky
~ ocean sunset song
birds retire wings
fall asleep with setting sun
~ shadows disappear
child of autumn
contemplating vivid dreams
~turning painted leaves
until the sunset
i am but a shadow
across the meadow
until the sunset
takes my hand
Copyright Joseph Randell Sherman 2013
Perhaps grief is a home
with a haughty ceiling and a bolted door
where you feel so comfortable, sometimes,
that you do not hear the steel s edge
slashing the tapestries,
suspended on the scented air:
it is heliotrope blended with brimstone,
seeking to settle in the corners;
only the window stands
between the limit and you.
Arduous walk, in silence you listen to the ancient voices,
firewood for this grief
always starved of you,
as demanding as a newborn child
whom you already love.
The door opens ajar and you close it:
There is nothing to be afraid of.
Amparo Arrospide (Argentina) is a Spanish poet and translator. She has published four poetry collections, Mosaicos bajo la hiedra, Alucinación en dos actos y algunos poemas, Pañuelos de usar y tirar and Presencia en el Misterio as well as poems, short stories and articles on literary and film criticism in anthologies and both national and foreign magazines. She has received numerous awards. Together with Robin Ouzman Hislop, she worked as co-editor of Poetry Life and Times, an E-zine.
In another life I was mute,
written words were my voice.
So I lay awake
into a script
that could stain your mind.
I inked my history across my body
presenting myself as artefact
and all the stares, scorn
and petty human hatred
did not feel like trauma any more,
they felt like value.
When we brought your ashes to the beach
at the end of Pilgrim Road, I poured them out
as fast as I could, standing knee-deep
in the seaweedy shallows, because it had started
to rain, and I didn’t want you to get wet.
What was I thinking? You were returning
to our first mother, the sea. But all I wanted
to do was gather up every gritty particle,
every chip of bone, then mix them with my bare
hands, using sand and mud, saliva and tears,
and bring you back, my own personal golem.
How could I have let you sift out of my fingers,
grain by grain? The heavier bits sank, mixed
with the broken shells; the lighter ones blew
in the wind, stuck to the patches of foam.
How can you be gone?
first appeared in South Carolina Review, 2011, to appear in the forthcoming book Gold. Barbara Crooker (2013 or 2014) in the Poeima Poetry Series of Cascade Books, a division of Wipf & Stock. www.barbaracrooker.com