by Carol Matos
I am a wading bird, youth without life, dying out. He leads
me alongside deep swamps. Sudden swerves, small guardrails. Ancient
alligators come upon us, a little too far. He rushes to the other side.
I notice his face, his confession of panic. I slash through tangled roots.
The daughter's distant gaze provokes her father's fury. She runs.
He chases her through the house, pulls her underwear down. She
moves quickly to escape his hard hand on her back. He hits her face
instead. Her lip bleeds. Paled by his act, the father turns away
from the daughter. Fearful of her terrible victory, she imagines tomorrow.
So many cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, Iíve learned to grow in
burnt grass. Now, I am the daring, never knowing when. I float alone
through mangrove creeks. Over me, a blazing sky. Under me, porous
limestone stores grassy waters until the dry season.
Summer Landscape by Ira Joel Haber
by Simon Perchik
Her loom as if some wounds
can never close, are dragged
and the lamb how soft death is
how white! all at once
it covers the sky
fills with this vague tearing apart
documents, pages, rags
and she is combing out the lamb
from its fountain and torn again
her fingers can't close, pulled down
by a waterfall :each strand
the mark on its throat the lamb
put back together :her child
over and over she rocks some crib
as if its blanket could break apart
and a little further off the sun
keep warm, nursed on the tiny stream
held in her arms she sings to it
wringing it inside, slowly
more tears and the years ahead.