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Voice of Eve Issue One (September/October 2018)


Contents Issue One....................................................................................................................................................... 1 SIX.................................................................................................................................................................. 5 Blueprint for Beauty...................................................................................................................................... 6 Moving On..................................................................................................................................................... 8 About Diana Rosen........................................................................................................................................ 9 The House Wrapped Around ...................................................................................................................... 11 Definition .................................................................................................................................................... 13 A Need to Know Basis ................................................................................................................................. 14 About Carol Smallwood .............................................................................................................................. 17 Two Days after Eden ................................................................................................................................... 19 From Inside the Maternity Den................................................................................................................... 20 I Said to the Den Mother ............................................................................................................................ 21 About Melinda Wilson ................................................................................................................................ 22 City Holler.................................................................................................................................................... 24 #Bully........................................................................................................................................................... 25 Dying Young ................................................................................................................................................ 26 About Colleen Farrelly ................................................................................................................................ 27 The Crack..................................................................................................................................................... 29 Coffee Run................................................................................................................................................... 31 BFF............................................................................................................................................................... 32 About Alisha Crump .................................................................................................................................... 33 Homespun ................................................................................................................................................... 35 Melancholia................................................................................................................................................. 37 Freedom ...................................................................................................................................................... 38 About Toti O’Brien ...................................................................................................................................... 40 Hey, Winds! ................................................................................................................................................. 42 Probably Sunsets Are Alike ......................................................................................................................... 43 I Am Asleep While Nights Give Way My Ages ............................................................................................. 44 The Dreams' Hues ....................................................................................................................................... 45 Here Are My Healing Prayers ...................................................................................................................... 46 About Anahit Arustamyan .......................................................................................................................... 47 With Just One Look ..................................................................................................................................... 49


Life is a Ceremony ....................................................................................................................................... 50 Summer Flowers ......................................................................................................................................... 51 Be My Angel ................................................................................................................................................ 52 About Karen Horsley ................................................................................................................................... 53 Deer in the Headlights ................................................................................................................................ 55 About Jennifer Lagier .................................................................................................................................. 56 Someone ..................................................................................................................................................... 58 Darkness ...................................................................................................................................................... 59 About Sarah Rodriguez ............................................................................................................................... 60 won't silence my magic ............................................................................................................................... 62 their frustrated fires.................................................................................................................................... 63 i will never surrender who i am .................................................................................................................. 65 legendary, mythical phoenix ....................................................................................................................... 66 soul devouring cancer ................................................................................................................................. 67 About Linda M. Crate .................................................................................................................................. 68


POEMS FROM DIANA ROSEN


SIX By Diana Rosen

Sensuous, pear-shaped, full of rhythm so fascinating to Jasper Johns drawing, painting, sculpting them into dull silvery statements deep black matte remarks full-bodied, slim on top, a woman. Six is a woman, pregnant with, not life, something more, the sum of the earth.


Blueprint for Beauty By Diana Rosen

She is twenty, has two babies, and a divorce from a man she loves but cannot live with his "mental un-health." Translation: fists, frightening the girls, forbidding her to accept a full scholarship for a chemistry degree. The good news: her mom agrees to take care of the kids when she finds work at a doctor’s office where he (it was always a he back then) takes her under his wing and under the desk for his daily satisfaction. He instructs her to be blond, chisel the Roman nose, risk it sniffing white powder. Recognizing her manual dexterity, he teaches her his skills to freshen faces for the screen, brighten hope for the newlydiscarded with too much money, too little to do. Now she is forty, submits to his needles even when it does not sustain his desire. Her girls, bitter about their perceived abandonment,


appreciate her home-made tiramisu, the occasional, only occasional, check. They’re in awe of her continued faith in The Church, that she’s avoided laws governing her un-certified (though welltrained) skills for those “little somethings” supervised by cosmetic surgeons for patients not yet ready for their full menu of services. Now she is sixty, off to Zumba class after work, her five-inch-high red-soled Louboutins click on the sidewalk; her colorful tights shape her size two frame; her still softly blond hair frames her wrinkle-less face, prick marks painted over with creamy (imported) make-up. The doctor? He died, leaving the wife everything but her pride, leaving our heroine as deep in denial as she was forty years ago. No, there never was anyone else. I had to keep my job, for the girls, for our livelihood. I didn’t know what else to do.


Moving On By Diana Rosen

Here, take the Mikasa. You always liked it more than the Dansk; And all the silver. I hate polishing it, you find that meditative Rubbing away the tarnish after exposure Like all those things we never spoke of. And, the television, You love those damn animal shows. I wouldn’t want you to miss a single one. And, some sheets and towels. Everyone needs clean sheets and towels. Lean the mattress against the tree Outside, like a kid playing hide-and-seek Afraid to be found. There. Everything’s settled. We’re done. Done. Done.


About Diana Rosen Diana Rosen has published essays, flash fiction, and poems in more than sixty publications including RATTLE, Tiferet Journal, and Soft Cartel, plus a half-dozen anthologies including Altadena Poetry Review, Those Who Can ...TEACH, and the award-winning, Kiss Me Goodnight. She lives and writes in Los Angeles where she also provides online content for food and beverage web sites.


POEMS FROM CAROL SMALLWOOD


The House Wrapped Around By Carol Smallwood

as if I’d never left, my feet automatically adapting to the spot that dipped, and without looking I knew the exact distance between the windows even without the television or stereo. The heavy doors did provide a feeling of solidity until one stuck—and the panic only calmed by the window above the kitchen sink where I’d studied clouds. Despite the happiness being with the kids, I remembered: “How do you know I’m mad?” said Alice. “You must be,” said the Cheshire Cat,” or you wouldn’t have come here.” Brylcreem, cigarettes, and antiseptic clung to the bedroom once shared with Cal; only two mirrors remained arranged so they endlessly repeated me till I disappeared. There’d been a mirror the night before I married that’d given wavy reflections while packing away girlhood diaries.


Now the stripes in the yellow wallpaper mocked, “So you thought you’d get away? Cal said you never would.” The yellow wallpaper became that in the story about a wife who peels it to free the woman she thinks trapped. Her husband called her, little girl; So did mine.


Definition By Carol Smallwood

The post office has flyers: “Crime Victims Have Rights” but emotional incest lacks legal definition-its victims seldom included in important sites. The post office has flyers: “Crime Victims Have Rights”: covert incest is a widespread oversight that abusers know lacks recognition. The post office has flyers: “Crime Victims Have Rights” but emotional incest lacks legal definition.


A Need to Know Basis By Carol Smallwood

I What circle of Purgatory has the deeply carved inscription, “Beauty is truth, truth beauty. That is all ye know, and all ye need to know”? As a woman I would’ve smiled at Keats had I traveled with his brothers, Dante and Virgil. Truth is more slippery for women. Women shape it from what they see and feel, from the ooze of living and blood of creation. II A rescue worker said that when a person falls between a passing train and train platform their body gets twisted like a corkscrew ribs down. When they’re removed they die because their guts fall out--before they’re just numb. When it happens workers call people close to them after saying they have one or two minutes to live after being removed from between train and platform. III If I accept the truth it meant those closest to me had done things so awful it altered my brain. Caroline had said, “They’re out to crack you,” but I hadn’t believed her.

It just wasn’t Uncle Walt. How about Cal? And had Doctor and Dirk really been any better? How many had guessed but did


nothing? How much had Honor Thy Father contributed? I had “HIT ME” on my forehead after Uncle Walt adopted me.

IV Could it be like what Tim O’Brien wrote in one of his stories about being in the Vietnam War? “The bad stuff never stops happening: it lives in its own dimension, replaying itself over and over.” V My brother said, “With Uncle Walt and Aunt Hester behind Cal what can you do? Uncle Walt could very well have done things to you as a child but it’s over.” “Don’t you know what it does? It’s like seeing an elephant in your pew and pretending it isn’t there!” “You’re like my women parishioners. You refuse to see things.” “See things?” “Whatever you think is wrong would look small if you read the lives of the saints.” VI When I get close to accepting truth, my mind retreats like a horse nearing a cliff. I remember telling Mary Elizabeth’s


husband that when I mowed it was so dry one summer that, “I’d never seen clouds of dust like that.” When he said, “It’s never been so dry before,” the logic, the mere acceptance of saying things the way they were seemed crude, impolite, not Christian. VII But what happened surfaces in dreams and symptoms as surely as earthquakes and volcanoes confirm the molten core of the earth.


About Carol Smallwood Carol Smallwood’s most recent poetry collections include In Hubble’s Shadow (Shanti Arts 2017); Prisms, Particles, and Refractions (Finishing Line Press, 2017); A Matter of Selection (Poetic Matrix Press, 2018). A multi-Pushcart nominee, she’s founded, supports humane societies.


POEMS FROM MELINDA WILSON


Two Days after Eden By Melinda Wilson

I woke with the ‘rage of all women’ condensed in my throat. Too newborn and without eyesight, I could not see the many like me, rallying to our collective age. Lumber in a hundredyear-old house as it settles into itself. Hauntingly and at night. Something mammalian clawed its way to the surface. Every camera-eyeful conspired to keep all the bitches down in their holes. So, when we finally spoke, two days after Eden had burned, in place of apology, we proclaimed: It’s bitches all the way down.


From Inside the Maternity Den By Melinda Wilson

No other task will occupy the mind or body. The sun produced by just a thought of you will collapse the ice cave around her, crushing her flat to hug the broken earth. When she should have been headed for the openness of the ocean, she was denning deep in the permafrost. For reasons unclear, we occasionally destroy our offspring, run them into the snowdrifts or abandon them at feeding time. Wake and leave the chamber. She will gradually starve to death or she will suffocate or she will live for years with arctic mites and only her raw materials. As long as there is still the chance of your extinction.


I Said to the Den Mother By Melinda Wilson

Look:

I am nothing.

Offended, she told me I am light. Or the possibility of light just before dawn. Then, the prism of color filling the dew globes on the Garden Spider’s web. She told me I am huntress. Born prey on the floodplain, turned opportunistic feeder. Because I find what’s mine.


About Melinda Wilson Melinda Wilson is Visiting Assistant Professor of English at Manhattan College and author of AMPLEXUS, a chapbook from Dancing Girl Press. Other poems have appeared in publications such as The Cincinnati Review, The Wisconsin Review, The Minnesota Review, Verse Daily, Valley Voices and elsewhere. She lives in New York City.


POEMS FROM COLLEEN FARRELLY


City Holler By Colleen Farrelly

It’s a warm summer evening. I’ve just finished my post-run twofor-one burrito special from the convenience store below my city apartment. A calculus final hangs like the sword of Damocles over my head, and a stack of unfinished MD/PhD applications perch precariously atop my calculus book, untouched since they arrived. During my freshman year, the assigned advisor told me that I’d make a better prostitute than doctor; kids like me don’t belong in school. injured duckling left on the lawn quacking for help— child of the holler I flip on the Home Run Derby and flop onto a floor pillow, attempting to replace the running commentary in my head with something else. Anything else. The screen flickers to Josh Hamilton hitting a 500-footer that almost breaks Yankee Stadium’s façade. I know his story well. Addiction. Recovery. Relapse. Recovery. The crowd knows his story, too, and still cheers. I glance back at the stack of applications and pick up a pen. first purslane of spring peeking out in holler grass— acceptance letter


#Bully By Colleen Farrelly

I’m curled up on our dorm pullout—eating a pizza while I review my theology notes—when you burst in with a copy of the Florida docudrama you’ve been wanting to see: Bully. It’s about a kid who’s been physically and sexually abusive to a group of other kids, who eventually hire another teen to kill him. She starts crying first. The murdered bully is awful, but he is a person. The victims sentenced to life in prison are, well, victims and kids. Morality and justice seem more complicated in reality than my notes suggest. We hug each other and cry until dawn, spilling secret scars and knowing we’re not alone. We don’t have to hate the people responsible. river carving a beautiful canyon— healed scars


Dying Young By Colleen Farrelly

It’s said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. Hers were bright with life, belying the weary experience of a young litigator working to prosecute a Tamil Tiger for human trafficking and crimes against humanity. In 18 months, she’ll be washed out to sea in the Columbo train bound for the shoreline. But tonight—tonight—we’re in a dive bar eating bad pizza and sharing a pitcher while we argue over FIFA. She’s tiny but feisty. I can’t imagine her losing this case, let alone her life. the last petal falls into winter’s first snow— dying young


About Colleen Farrelly Colleen M. Farrelly is a freelance writer in Miami, FL, whose works have recently appeared in Frogpond, Anti-Heroin Chic, cattails, Failed Haiku, Wales Haiku Review, and The Recusant, among others


POEMS FROM ALISHA CRUMP


The Crack By Alisha Crump

There’s a crack in the headboard Has it always been there? Did he see it and ignore it? Maybe he didn’t think it was going to crack open a thunderstorm above our heads Maybe he was too proud to admit that you can’t change the weather I traced it upward with my fingertip It was surprisingly smooth like the skin of a ripe apple I expected to wince for it to shock my finger with its grainy teeth Teeth that it must have but have been hiding this whole time just waiting for the opportunity to sink its obnoxious fangs into my unsuspecting flesh I never felt that passion or desire that urge to claim me as its lifelong partner


and walk me down the aisle Maybe when we used to wear shy smiles but were soon thrown away for the tight lines of our mouths Now I’m trailing my finger lazily down the crack hoping for the bite that will never come


Coffee Run By Alisha Crump

Red tail lights, right hand searching for the gear shift and the button hiding underneath like it knew this was going to happen but didn’t want any part Crunching like a handful of potato chips being eaten by someone with their mouth open My mouth was open too but the only thing that I was chewing on was what to say The feeling, a violation like I was changing in my bedroom and someone was peeping at me through the blinds knowing that it was already too late My coffee sat there looking white in the sunlight while we exchanged information then drove away


BFF By Alisha Crump

I have a best friend She is the one in my head spewing out poems


About Alisha Crump Alisha Crump holds a bachelor’s degree in English Studies from Ball State University. She was a poetry editor for Ball State’s national literary magazine, The Broken Plate. Keeping her passion alive, she is now a poetry editor for Torrid Literature Journal and Orson's Review. Her poetry has been published in Junto Magazine and Sun & Sandstone. When she is not reading, writing, or editing poetry, she can be found reading a Stephen King novel or watching reruns of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.


POEMS FROM TOTI O’BRIEN


Homespun By Toti O’Brien

Her hair still strong enough—once solidly grabbed, tightly twisted—to make a decent rope. So intimately attached to her skull she could hang over the edge of a ravine, and not fall. Be saved—she is sure—if someone took hold of her hair, quickly spiraled it into a coil and pulled up. The roots, see—though if you look at the discolored tip of a single specimen, it’s about a sixteenth of an inch long—aren’t shallow. They dive in, they probe depths unfathomed. She remembers how he has tried to extirpate it when she was a child, unripe, un-experienced. How he has sneaked into the deforesting process, attacking a few strands at a time, unexpectedly, often during the night. How he has grinned at his hands holding the stolen booty—a shattered cobweb. But his ambuscades didn’t leave marks. No bald patch. Just a little redness, a sting, memories of wounds invisible. Hair has a way to grow over, mix and match, masquerade. And why did he wish to erode the proliferous bush, the wild little grove topping her head? She didn’t figure it out, busy escaping, as she felt a kind of responsibility towards that scrap of land entrusted to her care. Hair mostly thrives on wind. Sometimes water… but this last can be forgone because hair feeds on sky, truly—all kind,


overcast or cloudless. Hair, no matter its shade, metabolizes blue, gray, cool green. It vibrates at the speed of outer atmospheres. Yet such freedom, such affinity with things light, immaterial, only enforces hair’s core quality of concrete sturdiness. Should she fall—or be pushed—over a precipice, she could count on this extra limb, this appendix she has cultured against odds and ends. Like, let’s say, a potted plant of rosemary— drying and resprouting in turns—she would carry from a rented room to the next. Amorously, window to window to window.


Melancholia By Toti O’Brien

I don’t know what damage I’ve done with these clumsy hands and dumb fingers. But I wish your life won’t resemble mine. May you never wake among ruins aware they tried killing you yet they didn’t finish the job. Killed and missed, every night whenever you lower your guard. I hope, son, the curse won’t run in your blood hope you didn’t drink it with milk get stained by contagion. Hope I didn’t pass you the plague I carried from far. This repeated murder of self by shooters unfit for the task by thugs who hit and run leave you breathless do not even say who they are.


Freedom By Toti O’Brien

Subdued (underneath layers) (rubber gelatinous) stayed my freedom (happiness) When it suddenly peers finds me (exhausted so) had to breathe breathe (deep waters sharp-toothed fish dancing shadows) spilling pink bloody foam tiny rivers drawing beautiful arabesque ***


and me (bony auriga) with hands finally bare


About Toti O’Brien Toti O'Brien is the Italian Accordionist with the Irish Last Name. She was born in Rome then moved to Los Angeles, where she makes a living as a self-employed artist, performing musician and professional dancer. Her work has most recently appeared in Heavy Feather, Triggerfish, The Almagre Review, and O:JA&L.


POEMS FROM ANAHIT ARUSTAMYAN


Hey, Winds! By Anahit Arustamyan

Hey, winds! You sweep butterflies away. A short day is their ages' scales. A butterfly disappears with its beauty. Hey, winds! You will never be able to steal fairies. They neither get lost nor pass away. They are the same dead butterflies reborn in unreal fantasies. Hey, winds! Were those butterflies real on the scales of your yesterday? O crazy winds! Butterflies turn into fairies.


Probably Sunsets Are Alike By Anahit Arustamyan

Yesterday's sunrise was different. A rose and a nightingale fell in love. An apricot tree was a bride. Its dress made from blossoms was white. Today's sunrise is different. It is raining but wait, the sun will smile! All sunrises are different. Probably sunsets are alike.


I Am Asleep While Nights Give Way My Ages By Anahit Arustamyan

Nights fly to me like gigantic eagles. They cover my tiny being. Nights remind me of dark wings. An owl looks around for something. Nights heal the owl's blindness. My eyes don't need healing. They see both owls and pigeons. Nights wrap my memories in the stars' twinkle. What remains when days go to nothingness? What remains? Memories! My tiny being is wrapped in my life's limited pages. I sleep when nights fly like dark eagles. I am asleep while nights give away my ages.


The Dreams' Hues By Anahit Arustamyan

Seashells! Who were you? Do you still remember the streets' tunes? Who gave you your vivid hues? Were your lovers' eyes blue? I send you my whispers from my room. The air's light horses ride to you. Each of you is a dream's bloom. How many lost dreams gave you their clues? Do the seas remind you of your lovers' eyes in blue? Look! There might be a torn slipper or a gold shoe! There might be nothing except the dreams' hues.


Here Are My Healing Prayers By Anahit Arustamyan

Here are my healing prayers for those who need. The pain inside a tight bandage screams. The rain cools down the shoulders of an elderly cliff. The mermaid looks for her sailor even in a mad wind. The sailor is sometimes late to reach his mermaid and she turns into a reef. The reef doesn't care what it used to be, a woman or a fish. Are my healing prayers for the pains with trembling lips? The cliffs look at me like strangers but I know what they think. They don't need my healing prayers as they don't get ill.


About Anahit Arustamyan Anahit Arustamyan is an Armenian poetess. She writes romantic and philosophical poems rich in metaphors and allegorical expressions. Her creative works are full of emotions and deep thoughts. Her poems have appeared in different poetry magazines and anthologies both online and in print. She is the author of the poetry books: The Queen Of Metaphors, My Intoxicated Ink, The Phantom's Dolphin, Words In Flight and The Canvas Of My Soul which are available on Amazon.


POEMS FROM KAREN HORSLEY


With Just One Look By Karen Horsley

with just one look the stars begin to spin in the sky my heartbeat fluttering my breathing rapid my head spinning, as the stars above me twinkle and glimmer against the dark curtain of night your eyes, like glittering stars intently staring into mine just one look and I am spinning out of control with the stars


Life is a Ceremony By Karen Horsley

From birth to death we strive to be free and live with a sense of autonomy To be independent and do what we want But the truth I’ve found just isn’t like that Instead we follow life’s set course moving along, from dot to dot The future, we think, is ours to shape We create our own chances, it’s not down to fate But predetermined ritual and rite and followed traditions guide our life From birth to death we strive to be free but is life, in fact, a ceremony?


Summer Flowers By Karen Horsley

Lush meadows ripen in the long days of summer The sun, a bright welcoming warmth Buds give way to blossom Turning green to gold As a carpet of buttercups washes across the field Delicate poppies Their petals ripple in the gentle breeze With a flowing, wave like motion Red over yellow, flickering Accents of stunning contrast Takes my breath away And I dream Of a world wrapped in summer flowers With colours exploding in front of my eyes Unleashing a sweet, fresh fragrance Apple blossom, honeysuckle And rose The scent of summer


Be My Angel By Karen Horsley

Be my angel, ever present You sit on my shoulder and whisper in my ear You guide me in my thoughts and actions I know you are there And that I’m not alone The life we travel we travel alone As time changes all and people fade from view Transient visitors to life We find ourselves the only constant


About Karen Horsley Karen Horsley is a British poet who began writing following diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer, through poetry Karen found a way to express and release her emotions. Her work has been published in anthologies by nOthing BOOKS and Forward Poetry. Karen’s debut collection of poetry Kaleidoscopic Beauty is available on Amazon.


POEM FROM JENNIFER LAGIER


Deer in the Headlights By Jennifer Lagier

Half asleep and bleary from lack of coffee, I stumble onto mist-shrouded trail. My clumsy trespass startles a doe and her two spotted fawns. At first, they are wary, pause to observe my jerky, arthritic progress with huge dark eyes as they swivel tan funnel ears. I’m the crude interloper interrupting their breakfast, on a solitary quest to seek revelatory epiphanies among fern, flowers, compost.


About Jennifer Lagier Jennifer Lagier has published fourteen books. Her work has appeared in multiple scholarly and literary magazines. She taught with California Poets in the Schools, currently edits the Homestead Review, and helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Like a B Movie (FutureCycle Press), Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Website: http://jlagier.net


POEMS FROM SARAH RODRIGUEZ


Someone by Sarah Rodriguez

Love was something he felt But did not receive in return He always hoped to receive A little benevolence or sympathy. The world turned its back No one cared Not a single tear Would stop the overwhelming hatred. Hatred spreads more hatred From his fingertips to the ends of his hair The evil absorbed in his iron blood And turned it blue. Yet his beating heart still yearned For someone to love For someone to share The pleasures & pains of life.


Darkness By Sarah Rodriguez

The dim sun is tasty Its fiery juice trickles off my plump lips Only one bite remains Shall I plunge this world Into darkness forever? If eaten, This candle Will never light again Its brilliance Will be forgotten Why must it go? I cannot keep the bliss away The pause before chaos erupts Floods my face frozen Tears bead at the corners Why can’t I keep it down?


About Sarah Rodriguez Sarah lives in San Diego where she likes to paint and code up robots. When she's not doing that, she spends her time with her husband, son and 2 dogs.


POEMS FROM LINDA M. CRATE


won't silence my magic by Linda M. Crate

they've told me i dream too big since day one, but perhaps their dreams aren't big enough; i want to be challenged, i want an adventure so that when i do get everything i aspired for and more that i have a story worth telling— always they told me to get my head out of the clouds, but i refuse; i always resisted and for that they hated me but i am a wild thing outside of their control— they make it clear i am not their cup of tea because i burn them in some way, but i am only trying to live my best life; just trying to bloom i am a flower that resurrects an immortal flame, a phoenix only wishing to spread feathers of love and light— always they've tried to silence my magic, but it speaks loudly because i have a power and voice all my own.


their frustrated fires by Linda M. Crate

they say the sky is the limit, but no one will limit me; i am limitless won't be defined by their terms i am who i am defining myself because if i listened to them i would never achieve anything less than self-loathing and defeat, but those aren't what i need or want; a negative mind cannot yield positive results so i just shoot for the moon because even if i land in the stars i'm glowing— i am immortal of the flame always rising from the ashes of yesterday nothing will keep me down especially not the expectations or rumors they whisper behind my back


not one of them is brave enough to communicate how they feel to my face so let them forever burn in frustration as i prove them wrong.


i will never surrender who i am by Linda M. Crate

they asked me to bury who i was, but i couldn't do that; i came from the darkness they planted me in as a wild thorned rose— only those who deserve my petals will know my fragrance otherwise they will bleed, for far too many moons people who have had no business being in my heart took up residence there; but now i am chopping down every toxic tree to make room for new pines and willows like the ones that whispered peace and compassion to me as a child when i sought refuge from a man who chose to be a monster—he tried to cut away my dreams, but only lit my fires all the more brighter; everything he said i couldn't do i sought to prove that i could because no one defines me except for me—i have slain my own monsters and shattered the masks of nightmares my entire life, and will continue to do so toward those who think they will break the dreams of dreamers because i am their queen; i will not let paradise shatter beneath the fangs of devils—i will take their vices and watch them hang themselves because life should be for everyone, we should all be able to accomplish our wishes and dreams no matter who we are; so don't tell me i need to be a certain way because i never will be anyone less than me—i am a goddess, powerful and divine full of magic and a voice all my own; i won't let you take that from me—i will never surrender who i am.


legendary, mythical phoenix by Linda M. Crate

you can sculpt a thousand pedestals and gilded cages for me, but i will never be held in the restraints of who people wish me to be; i am a sunset, raven, valkyrie of white wings, keeper of golden suns, daughter of the silver moon— a lie no matter how ornamented is still a lie so i won't sit in the boxes society says are mine for i am of a worth more infinite than rubies or diamonds, and my magic will not be shattered nor dimmed by the fallacy of their lies; my voice will always rise from the ashes for like the legendary mythical phoenix i will rise immortal of the flame burning every nightmare and monster who ever stood in the way of my dreams.


soul devouring cancer by Linda M. Crate

tripping over the tongues of syllables not theirs, i see so many swept away in the tide of who they do not want to be; i want to free them of their lofty prisons—they don't see they're only killing themselves and their dreams, but i can; and i refuse to be them—i will find my dreams, and i will use them to burn away the nightmares of my life; because life is too short to be a relic or a ruin long before your time is gone—so many archers have tried to take my heart, but it is mine; they have only tasted my thorns and bled for them because i won't give my flowers to just anyone—blowing out my candle won't make yours shine brighter, and i refuse to surrender my light; my love, my voice, my magic, my power isn't for anyone's use but mine—i will use my heart for good, and make this world somehow a little less evil for doing so because i refuse to accept that the status quo is the way things always were and will always need to be; we all have the right to be who we are and we should all be living our own dreams—anyone who tells you different needs to be cut out because they are a cancer that will devour your soul.


About Linda M. Crate Linda M. Crate's poetry, short stories, articles, and reviews have been published in a myriad of magazines both online and in print. She has five published chapbooks A Mermaid Crashing Into Dawn (Fowlpox Press - June 2013), Less Than A Man (The Camel Saloon - January 2014), If Tomorrow Never Comes (Scars Publications, August 2016), My Wings Were Made to Fly (Flutter Press, September 2017), and splintered with terror (Scars Publications, January 2018), and one micro-chapbook Heaven Instead (Origami Poems Project, May 2018). She is also the author of the novel Phoenix Tears (Czykmate Books, June 2018).

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Voice of Eve - Issue One September/October 2018  

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