Sunday, January 24, 2016

Three Poems by Lana Bella

A Photograph

Warmth mingled in your breaths.
Inches from mine,
charged with unsealed joy or anticipation.
I turned my face to where
the shutters' noise from the camera clicked.
You became a blurred object in
my peripheral vision,
angled as it bunched at the edge,
yet, that glint of gold reflected in your eyes
was caught in the hurried lenses
of the photograph.
And for that one small instant,
our gaze clutched tight to a memory,
with my heat at the foreground,
and yours tilted at the nape of my neck--
unleasing a stillness that turned into a whisper
of a promise yet to be named.

A December Face

December and I were in a steady race
to see who would relent first--
where I went,
it followed;
I moseyed on by the roundabout way
over the ice-capped bridge through the park,
when December leapt from atop the pine
onto a vertigo of light
above the flophouse where mother
held the weight of disappointment just so
that I'd begun to sprout ulcers
within the entrails.

While the hours knitted moments
gathering in rhythmic tangos and half-
whispers clung to prayers,
how much time was left for me as I heaved
the pendulum of consternation
on my shoulders and over my back?

During which snowfall has planted
iced orchids upon wreaths of thorny crowns,
not one boulevard was left for my walking,
turned back,
giving a quiet nod of surrender toward
this long impasse with mortality,
peeling off the ripcord handle
from December's chute.
Reading to jump.

A Nameless Thing

there is a croak,
something shimmies
out of the ripples of the air that
I cannot help to bristle
my inked quill over
the papyrus,

at first, the sound
leaves a ghost of restlessness
loose on my fingertips,
the more I tug it,
the less it struggles,

drawing epithets with
shadows from the squiggly loops
of calligraphy, i cannot
exhaust the fuel of
this nameless thing that
touches the tip of my ennui,

its tail brushes
my bent wrist like a bird flitting
through a bridal-veiled sky,
quivering the pages
so faintly that I can almost see
the script on the other side--

A Pushcart nominee, Lana Bella has works of poetry and fiction published and forthcoming in over 150 journals, including a chapbook with Crisis Chronicles Press (Winter, 2016), Abyss & Apex, Chiron Review, Foundling Review, Fourth & Sycamore, Harbinger Asylum, Literary Orphans, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry Quarterly and elsewhere.  She divides her time between the US and the coastal town of Nha Trang, Vietnam, where she is a wife of a talking-wonder novelist and a mom of two far-too-clever-frolicsome imps.

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