Issue 1.2

Wrong Light by Claire Eder

                                     Gainesville, Florida

Plastic bag and dirt rain water. Rotted, lichened bark
drops in the rain; the tree sheds it like hangnails.
Sick roots worry thin grit soil. Everything bulges
the wrong way. See the empty shirt lumped
on the sidewalk—it used to be some bright, primary
color. See the county prison vans loop the main road,
up and down, several times a day. A narrow slit
shows a bare bulb over whoever’s in back.
Only cardinals question the green and the grey
and the black. Sometimes the live oak becomes
the hanging moss and collapses in a pile
on the fraternity house lawn. Sometimes
the wood planks of the condo balcony become
the rain and all that is not nail rots away.
Everywhere, finally, cold drops sprout
upside down from limbs and railings and threaten
to drop their grey glint down on you.

 

Notes on Louisiana Water by Lana Bella

sea-larks perch
the sky with their brown wings,
dolphins swim into
the Grand Isle island,
trailing the flayed skin of the shore,

few things about the sea
disenchant the dark-haired woman on the water
who is pushing the blue-stenciled kayak
away from the sand,
slipping into the strain
of her back
then the sag with her knees,
she sits in as the thin vessel drifts out toward surf,
without fail,
she feels those familiar pricks of an old injury
traversing down from
shoulders to fingers gripping
the paddle blades,

today, her pale skin
is effused in the smell of salt and curled morning
steam, lending her snaggletoothed
smile a veneer of structure
if not preoccupied calm,
the air in front and the sea throughout
are her trusted partners,
she is after all, only a system
of breaths and marrows,
where muscles memorize which rocks to steer
and which waves
to catch the sea’s momentum—

 

About the Contributors

A Pushcart nominee, Lana Bella has a diverse work of poetry and fiction published and forthcoming with over 130 journals, including a chapbook with Crisis Chronicles Press (spring 2016), Ann Arbor Review, Chiron Review, Coe Review, Harbinger Asylum, Literary Orphans, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry Quarterly, QLRS (Singapore), Sein Und Werden (UK), White Rabbit (Chile) and elsewhere, among others.

Claire Eder’s poems and translations are forthcoming or have appeared in the Cincinnati Review, Subtropics, the Florida Review, [PANK], Midwestern Gothic, The Common, and Guernica, among other publications. In 2015, she was selected to receive an ALTA (American Literary Translators Association) Travel Fellowship. She graduated from the University of Florida’s MFA program and is currently pursuing a PhD in poetry at Ohio University.

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