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Voice of Eve Issue Two (November/December 2018)

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Contents Issue Two (November/December 2018) ....................................................................................................... 1 my psychopharmacologist ............................................................................................................................ 5 cute baby, good job ...................................................................................................................................... 6 cowards ......................................................................................................................................................... 7 About Deborah Pless..................................................................................................................................... 8 Threnody ..................................................................................................................................................... 10 Choosing a Mule: an Ozark Sonnet ............................................................................................................. 11 Those Days .................................................................................................................................................. 12 About Wendy Taylor Carlisle ...................................................................................................................... 13 Nemesis ....................................................................................................................................................... 15 About Rebecca Sian Pyne............................................................................................................................ 16 Fall ............................................................................................................................................................... 18 A Coldish May ............................................................................................................................................. 19 Diagnostic differential ................................................................................................................................. 20 About Ruth Lehrer ...................................................................................................................................... 21 Third Party................................................................................................................................................... 23 The Shattering ............................................................................................................................................. 24 Syrup Dreams .............................................................................................................................................. 25 About Madeleine Gallo ............................................................................................................................... 26 Life Experiences .......................................................................................................................................... 28 One .............................................................................................................................................................. 28 Two.............................................................................................................................................................. 28 Three ........................................................................................................................................................... 29 About Eliza Mimski...................................................................................................................................... 30 A Child’s Lament ......................................................................................................................................... 32 About Diane Valentine ................................................................................................................................ 33 Mean Beak .................................................................................................................................................. 35 Heavy Mirrors ............................................................................................................................................. 36 Copper Isn’t Gold ........................................................................................................................................ 37 About Deana Nantz ..................................................................................................................................... 38 Baby Blue .................................................................................................................................................... 40 Red Apple Villanelle .................................................................................................................................... 42 2


About Brittany Ackerman ........................................................................................................................... 43 Through The Looking Glass ......................................................................................................................... 45 Shield Maiden ............................................................................................................................................. 46 Masquerade ................................................................................................................................................ 47 About Anna Cates ....................................................................................................................................... 48 A Mother’s Treasure ................................................................................................................................... 50 The Free Spirit ............................................................................................................................................. 52 A Grandmother’s Promise .......................................................................................................................... 54 About Amarine Rose Ravenwood ............................................................................................................... 56 Fire Preserved ............................................................................................................................................. 58 Dear Dickinson, ........................................................................................................................................... 59 About Abigail Kipp....................................................................................................................................... 60

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POEMS FROM DEBORAH PLESS

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my psychopharmacologist by Deborah Pless

it’s very possible that my psychopharmacologist is stealing my words at night it’s not the drugs it’s him, my psychopharmacologist when I’m sleeping he crawls through the window through the cracks in the whining air conditioner and he snatches them with his scalpel I’m sure he has a scalpel he’s cut the words right out of my head sometimes I wake up and I see him, but he says he’s not real bullshit give me back my words, you fucker or I swear I won’t go to group in the fall it’s a shame too because he’s a pretty good psychopharmacologist otherwise

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cute baby, good job by Deborah Pless

my first love had his second child last week and all I thought while I looked at the photos was does his wife know that I’ve seen his dick? not recently, obviously but, like, I did see it it’s not a nice thought, I’ll admit they looked very happy I’m sure they’re happy I’m happy but, like, does she know? cute baby, guys

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cowards by Deborah Pless

to whoever stole my bicycle seat: fuck you steal the whole bike you coward

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About Deborah Pless Deborah Pless is a graduate of Hamilton College and completed her Master's in creative writing at New York Film Academy. She has previously been published for her nonfiction work and currently works in youth mentoring and advocacy in Massachusetts.

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POEMS FROM WENDY TAYLOR CARLISLE

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Threnody By Wendy Taylor Carlisle

In this picture his spider-fingers work the strings blue-veined arms flex tattooless, smooth-skinned dirty blonde hair collapses across his cheek the left one the one wrecked by the exit wound. On his old record, I can almost make out his soft mouth moving around that distinctive croon almost feel again his actual ribcage fall and rise against my cheek After that happens I can almost but not quite feel what he must have felt swallowing that Glock.

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Choosing a Mule: an Ozark Sonnet By Wendy Taylor Carlisle

I have a big head and some rocks in it. A pebble of envy sticks in my throat. Some days knowing and being known compels me to lift a stone. Often, the schist in my head is a boulder so large even a pry bar can’t do the job, it needs some animal energy. There are a hundred beasts fit for this occasion. I choose the mule. A mule is a hardy puller, a case of hybrid vigor. A mule can pack one fifth of its weight, even the hinnies. A mule is sovereign and strong, plus a mule requires less food than its horse mamma. If I’m gonna find out what’s hiding in my head, I suppose I’ll need me a mule.

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Those Days By Wendy Taylor Carlisle

I drove on Highway 27 telephone poles on my right for a chart. I hustled a second-hand Austin America. I was irate. I was on the run to Okeechobee where I thought I’d find a begin-again. There were only cattle in Okeechobee so I turned around. I drove eighty coming and going. When the engine foundered, I hitchhiked home. Those days were sex without protection. Those days were endless beef and cream. Those were summers ruined by honey. I was sixteen

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About Wendy Taylor Carlisle Wendy Taylor Carlisle lives and writes in the Arkansas Ozarks. She is the author of two books, and five chapbooks, most recently, They Went Down to the Beach to Play (Locofo Chaps, Chicago, 2017). Her work is widely available in print and on line. See her in Artemis Journal, pacificREVIEW, Barzakh and forthcoming in Cider Press Review. For more information, check her website at www.wendytaylorcarlisle.com.

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POEM FROM REBECCA SIAN PYNE

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Nemesis By Rebecca Sian Pyne

Your lying kisses tasted like stale wine. Your breath was warm and tainted by deceit. This new heart you held, it was never mine. On those nightly trysts when you both would meet. How could you do such a terrible thing? You lied when you promised to remain true. When on my finger you’d just put a ring. What did you really expect me to do? I acted from rage but also from grief, Tracked your mistress down, I wanted her dead. For a Fury scorned is beyond belief. In your arrogance, you took her to bed. My parting gift to help make a new start, Instead of forgiveness, I give her heart.

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About Rebecca Sian Pyne Rebecca Sian Pyne is a writer/ mental health first aider / freelance micropalaeontologist from rural West Wales. She is a departmental administrator supporting students at Aberystwyth University, currently enrolled on a Cert HE in Creative Writing. Publication credits include Mad Scientist Review, Aurora Wolf, The Dawntreader, EMG-zine, Albedo One and others.

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POEMS FROM RUTH LEHRER

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Fall By Ruth Lehrer

There’s a fog on my heart I don’t know when from a condensation of moldy heath stuffed against cell walls too long What do they call that? Those membranes those gates – inside outside water pressure should be the same. Equalized until it’s not. A dry life A wet garden In the fall the leaves don’t rot not yet Dry until they are wet Wet until they are dry Saving water between sheaths of cells. Rot only happens after the frost after the spring.

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A Coldish May By Ruth Lehrer

Her dog bit her she said it was by accident as if in a haze on the road in the dust She let the bite fester till warm and hopeless on a calloused hand The dog’s mouth bloody but innocent She often said she was looking for a way out She doesn’t answer when you protest that it’s still spring.

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Diagnostic differential By Ruth Lehrer

I know it’s cliché but it feels like fire Obviously no flame You can’t actually see and attest but still I’d like to stand by my word except when they ask they ask for verbs They ask is it burning, stabbing, plunging, radiating Is it jabbing, throbbing, stinging, panting I want to say sharp like a tack mean like a squib rude like a fork I want to say esoteric not garden variety I fail their test But maybe they’re right if a verb is just a way to stretch time ad infinitum. 20


About Ruth Lehrer Ruth Lehrer is a writer and sign language interpreter living in western Massachusetts. Her writing has been published in many journals such as Lilith and Jubilat. Her poetry chapbook, TIGER LAUGHS WHEN YOU PUSH, is published by Headmistress Press. Her young adult novel, BEING FISHKILL, is available from Candlewick Press. She can be found at ruthlehrer.com

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POEMS FROM MADELEINE GALLO

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Third Party By Madeleine Gallo

Each morning before the rooster crowed, Ramona rose to see him. He was a russet stallion, colored like tribal boots, a phantom stripe down his snout. Ramona knew the names of everything. The pastern and the coronet, the cannon beneath his knee. I used to eat orange slices in the stable and watch her scrape green slime from his hooves. Our neighbors called him Champion. She wasted her life on the great hill beyond our window, the black shape of her body on his. When that great beast went down on Christmas, Ramona worked for hours on warm hay, coaxing sugar onto his tongue, wiping the snot from his nostrils. And I stood with my hands tucked away, snow leaking through the hole in my left mitten. I wished that the horse would die, that Ramona would come into bed and stay at least for the holiday. I sucked oranges until my tongue was hot, my fingers numb, while Champion lay heaving, one misted eye turned toward mine.

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The Shattering By Madeleine Gallo

Pretty girl looks into herself and sees the glass crystal, all violent angles and hard lines. A little voice whispers — it whispers every day — protect the crystal, pretty girl, always protect your crystal and polish all those straight-edged corners. Pretty girl cuts into herself and heats up the glass crystal with her palm until it's warm as jelly, wet as afterbirth. A thing with tentacles lives inside the crystal. It climbs through shattered prism after prism like a beast out of hell. Pretty girl feels those hot suction cups touch her insides for the first time. They suck something into her, out of her. A little voice dies. Better than angles, sweeter than beauty.

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Syrup Dreams By Madeleine Gallo

I used to dream about lips on a shadowed thigh, magnolia leaves on breasts. I woke each night with burning taste buds; my chest lingered concave, blood ran for no one and the memory was all syrup, melted flower petals. That empty bedroom was torture — I would have gone with anybody.

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About Madeleine Gallo Madeleine Gallo is currently a first year MA student at Wake Forest University. Her work has appeared in Susquehanna Review: Apprentice Writer, Fermata, Sun and Sandstone, Belle Reve Literary Journal, The Pylon, Sigma Tau Delta Review, Into the Void, Litro, and Rattle. After graduation, she plans to pursue an MFA or a PhD in Contemporary American Poetry.

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POEMS FROM ELIZA MIMSKI

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Life Experiences By Eliza Mimski

One Yes, of course the act itself is bad but what happens afterwards just goes on and on. For years, every time I'd have sex I would become hysterical and run to the bathroom where I would cry and then put myself back together. I thought this was what people did during sex, probably because I was assaulted before I was sexually active. After years of this, I had a very understanding lover and he told me to do whatever I needed to do. I was able to stay in bed and cry with him. Eventually, I stopped crying.

Two I took a night class at San Francisco State University. It was hard to park and so I parked down near the dormitories. I had to walk down an asphalt path through the woods to get there. My class was over at 10 PM and I was walking down the path. I heard footsteps behind me. I turned around to see a man advancing toward me. I started running and I ran all the way to my car, got in and locked it. The guy stood outside my car window, and excitedly told me he needed a ride downtown and to open the door and let him in. I honked my horn over and over, hoping to alert someone in the dormitories. He ran away. I never told anyone about this.

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Three When I was ten years old, my mother worked full-time and left me alone a lot. We had a boarder who rented one of the bedrooms where we lived. One Saturday, he told me we were going to do something fun. He said to lay on the couch on my back. I did it. He took his finger and traced the outline of my lips, telling me that my job was not to laugh. It didn't feel right but I didn't know what to do. Shortly after that, I would come home after school and close the bedroom door. I'd take off all my clothes look at myself in the mirror naked. I had no idea why I was doing this.

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About Eliza Mimski Eliza Mimski is a writer living in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in Entropy, Poets Reading the News, the Eunoia Review as well as other publications. In 2017, she was a finalist in the San Francisco Writers Conference contest, in adult fiction. That same year, she was also a finalist in UK's Fortnight Poetry Contest.

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POEM FROM DIANE VALENTINE

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A Child’s Lament By Diane Valentine

I’m the reason You married I’m the reason You’re unhappy I’m the reason You are battered I’m the reason You’re afraid. I’m the reason You’re alone I’m the reason I’m the reason You’re so sad. I’m so sorry.

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About Diane Valentine Diane Valentine attends a critique group at AllWriters’ Workplace and Workshop with internationally known author and teacher, Kathie Giorgio. Diane’s work appears in Front Range Review, Crab Fat Magazine, Birds Piled Loosely, No Extra Words (podcast), Boston Literary Magazine, Edify Fiction, and The Shine Journal. Her novels are Family Secrets August, 2014.Daring to Soar, July, 2015.

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POEMS FROM DEANA NANTZ

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Mean Beak By Deana Nantz

Bringing food for my husband but none for me, my mother-n-law is a foil to my mindful mater who feeds us both. Sitting crooked in a dining room that I paid for, they eat store-bought sushi and smile like wicked cats swallowing sentient birds. I’m hurt but thankful for the fridge in my house because if I lived in his, I’d be unnourished and naked in a chamber where my bones are picked over and over by cruel carnivorous tertiary consumers of soul.

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Heavy Mirrors By Deana Nantz

A mother sparrow killed herself with the door. Beckoned by light or some other confusion, blood trickled down her beak after a blunt smack. I scooped her up and dumped her in the mum-filled flower pot, the best I could do for a fall funeral. Glass doors and steep stairs could kill a mother and infant. What a nightmare to drop a child. So we added a bottom suite for safety. Clichéd as the saying, “don’t put the cart before the horse,” we put the nursery before the baby. Because we conceived once, didn’t mean we would again. A reflection of a cloud doesn’t mean sky. Waiting on you made a fool out of me. Your almost daddy left, unable to handle the empty space where I stand looking into one of the mirrors above the his and hers sink. I’d rather smash my face than gaze too long. Yes, we birds are fragile—apt to choke on worms intended to feed our young.

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Copper Isn’t Gold By Deana Nantz

Do you remember the growing stain in the laundry room ceiling? You never liked the tub’s piping, corroded copper too tedious to repair in a room upstairs out of your bounds. Wedding vows oozed off our tongues and turned to steam. So much for a sand ceremony. Plaster cracked above our heads. You replaced the pipe and ignored the dam. The plumbing works, but the hole is there.

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About Deana Nantz Deana Nantz holds an MA in American literature and an MFA from Eastern Kentucky University's Blue Grass Writer's Studio. Her chapbook, Fits of Wrath of Irony, is available through Finishing Line Press. The Voices Project and Southern Women's Review featured her poetry and her fiction has appeared in Fiction Southeast (finalist for the Editor's Prize) Night Train, Fiddleblack, Funny in 500, Fried Chicken and Coffee, and other literary journals.

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POEMS FROM BRITTANY ACKERMAN

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Baby Blue By Brittany Ackerman

My brother was the firstborn. He was spoiled. He had blonde hair, so light, so soft, almost white. Then it all turned dark until it was jet black. He dyed it once, in college, after his first arrest. He was given a blue blanket, baby blue for a baby boy, so soft. He kept it folded neatly on the edge of his bed, always. I watched him play Super Mario. I laid my cheek on his blanket, it was cool, it was cold, it felt good. I watched him play for hours in silence, only the clink of coins collected, only the melody of a one-up earned. He left the blanket behind, grew up and out of it, the childhood thing, that blanket was. I took it to college, slept with it, and it smelled like his body, like smoke, like teenage musk, like sharp wood, like coffee, like tar. I slept so good with that blanket. I asked if he wanted it in rehab and he said No, you keep it. I felt like it was mine, a one-up earned. I got high and played video games in my dorm. Boys came and went; they smelled woody, like cigarettes, like tar. When they made love to me I felt the blanket on my body, so cool, so soft. I felt it under me and it stayed when they all left. It was a piece of him. It was him. In pictures, it looks like my brother loved me, his little doll, his sister, so tiny, so small. But I haven’t seen him in a while. He is my mother’s favorite, her baby boy, so soft, so blue. A boy once broke my heart. He had the blanket from a sleepover. He loved it too, how cool it was, how cold its belly got at night, how soft it felt against the face. He got mad and 40


threw it away. He made love to me and told me It’s gone, the blanket, I threw it away, and when I changed my mind it was too late, they had already come for the trash. Okay I said, It’s gone. This one, he was so sharp, smoked cigarettes, drank coffee, and I let him defeat me, Bowser in his castle, so proud, so mean. And when my brother tried to leave himself he left me nothing, the blanket was gone, my favorite thing, the only thing, so blue.

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Red Apple Villanelle By Brittany Ackerman

This woman was not my mother who brought a red apple to the play. My mom had attended every other, She must have been busy tending to my brother when we took the field trip that day. This woman was not my mother, she wore a long, brown coat made of leather, long hair, colored scarves displayed; at the play we sat next to each other. In kindergarten, I still needed my mother’s comfort. The woman motioned the apple my way, this woman was not my mother. I wouldn’t eat the red skin that the apple did cover, so she ate the first layer to put me at bay. And gave it to me, the white chunky flesh uncovered. I fell asleep in the play on this other, when I woke up she had no loving words to say, this woman, she was somebody else’s mother and I wanted my own, not another.

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About Brittany Ackerman Brittany Ackerman is a writer from Riverdale, New York. She earned her BA in English from Indiana University and graduated from Florida Atlantic University’s MFA program in Creative Writing. She teaches Critical Studies at AMDA College and Conservatory of the Performing Arts in Hollywood, CA. She was the 2017 Nonfiction Award Winner for Red Hen Press, as well as the AWP Intro Journals Project Award Nominee in 2015. Her work has been featured in The Los Angeles Review, No Tokens, Hobart, Cosmonauts Ave, Fiction Southeast, and more. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California, with her forthcoming collection of essays entitled The Perpetual Motion Machine to be released by Red Hen Press in November of 2018.

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POEMS FROM ANNA CATES

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Through The Looking Glass By Anna Cates

“But I don’t want to go among mad people," Alice remarked. “Oh, you can’t help that," said the Cat: "we’re all mad here.” Alice peers through the looking glass (a queen of hearts in a kingdom of voyeurs) at cotton candy clouds, moving westward so montivagant. Shady characters slump beneath shady trees above the gloomy flume. Worms smoke dope on magic mushrooms, and the Jabberwocky vrooms across the vestiges of violaceous charisma blushing each sunrise to sunset warm pinkish secrets. She is no coward struck with catoptrophobia. Yet now is not the time for fanfaronade to gorgonize the cavalcade bound to the Red Queen’s ktenology, for here no anarchist antidotes loom. She must flee her own hamartia while her house of cards yet stands, while cats yet grin and rabbits run, while pigs have wings and dodos roam, she can still go home.

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Shield Maiden By Anna Cates

some girls wait in a castle others call a cage they wait for the red cape to come flashing a prince with perfect teeth and polished boots they wait for their gardens to grow they say it takes a lot of rain alone in their bower they watch the parade pass by they dream of roses that never fade in a world full of princes full of monsters too

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Masquerade By Anna Cates

diamond tiara feathers of red or blue goblin cat or bandit she hides cheeks and eyes behind the mask because she’s shy she betrays no magic to gods of mountain or sky she wears the mask because she’s shy gods on the mountain gods in the sky she wears the mask because she’s shy

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About Anna Cates Anna Cates is a graduate of Indiana State University (M.A. English and Ph.D. Curriculum & Instruction/English) and National University (M.F.A. Creative Writing). Her first collections of poetry and fiction, The Meaning of Life and The Frog King, were published by Cyberwit Press, and her second poetry collection, The Darkroom, by Prolific Press. She lives in Ohio with her two beautiful kitties and teaches education and English online, including graduate courses in creative writing.

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POEMS FROM AMARINE ROSE RAVENWOOD

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A Mother’s Treasure by Amarine Rose Ravenwood

She holds her child near, Her child, so dear, As the chair rocks to and fro… It’s been a hard day, And the long night is gray, As she straightens the little hair bow... Sleep may be far off, for the little one’s cough, Yet, the mother’s touch is sweet… And the gentlest sway, of the chair, just for bae, is controlled by Mama’s feet… The fire, nearby, In the hearth, makes Mom sigh, And her head drops down to doze… Snuggled in place, is that sweet, precious face, and the child is in repose… There’s rest, after all, ‘Till the morning’s bright call, And the night is deep and mild… 50


A mother, she gives, For as long as she lives, To the care of her cherished child‌

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The Free Spirit by Amarine Rose Ravenwood

Arms spread wide to touch the sky, She embraces all she is, Not missus or madam or ma’am or mom, She is definitely a Miz. Her heart, it soars, it flies, it sweeps, It blasts all in its path, In fiery passion and flaming expression, Her joy can flash to wrath. In highs and lows, there’s no mid-ground, Adventures are a must, Experience is first upon her list, In this, she’ll always trust. Brazen and brave, she takes such risks, And always bets her all, And though catastrophe abounds, She learns from every fall. Her heart is light and heaven-bright, Still full of innocence, The twisted world has not impressed, Or made its own imprints. The future, now, still seems far off, She’ll plan for that tomorrow. Today, she’s all wrapped up in now, 52


And trouble, she won’t borrow. She’s currently in the prime of life, The world bends to her will, And though someday, her age will fray, For now, she takes her fill, Of life, of hope, of love’s sweet passion, Imagination free, She revels in joy and tastes the day, Content to simply be.

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A Grandmother’s Promise by Amarine Rose Ravenwood

A grandmother’s promise To always be there, To watch and care and love, Is carried out long, even after she’s gone, As she watches from above. She knows each mistake; the chances you take, But she never stops her cheering; For each time you fall, Not one time, but all, Is a lesson not for fearing. She spreads out her wings, At times even sings, In the hopes that your heart will hear, And take strength from it, Become inner-lit, For to her, you are that dear. You should never forget How you two used to sit, And she’d tell you all her stories, 54


For she’s never left; You’re not so bereft, And she revels in your glories.

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About Amarine Rose Ravenwood Amarine Rose Ravenwood writes whimsical, hearth and home, magical, fairy-tale, and Halloween-story themed poetry that has both rhyme and meter, as well as writing children's, preteen, and young adult fantasy fiction. She is drawn to the innocent and the dreamy and her work appeals to both the young and the youngat-heart.

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POEMS FROM ABIGAIL KIPP

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Fire Preserved By Abigail Kipp

You asked to see my fire The part of me That burns red Despite me not Wanting to Instead I froze the world A crystal blue ball Turning your breath To liquid lace In silver air White faces look Past each other And still you stay Take my hand As I struggle between Right and fair You add your fire To my frost And somehow we Is better than each Neither melted nor frozen We do more than survive No sloppy seconds Just a beautiful piece Red and blue

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Dear Dickinson, By Abigail Kipp

You must have known sitting in your dull attic About your genius giggling-and-condescending way Dashing in Amherst, an open-ended trick. Tucked in white, a ghost in empty hallway Standing a loaded gun, challenging. A show. Your ego is unconquerable it means everything To a girl in a dusty library’s empty shadow Pouring in hope-colored dream, noticing She could find another way to imagine A human touch. Darling author, tutor In fear. One thousand and eight hundred done. Drowned in the silver of disdain. Archer With slow ivory bow and liquid arrow. There’s more in the world than you can bring low.

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About Abigail Kipp “My interest in poetry started when I was very young. When I was about four my family moved to the US, and speaking was hard for me. Thinking in two languages can make things a little time consuming. I was also nervous when speaking because I had an accent and people would make fun of me or refuse to acknowledge me. I would say umm a lot and people would get frustrated and yell. I found comfort in writing. It was a chance for me to be heard if only by myself. I could say everything I needed without making a sound. I write poetry because it is gets to the point but still has a lot of imagery and emotion behind it. I can say exactly what I mean. In the third grade, my class was assigned to write a poem. This was my first time doing more than just reading poetry. My teacher said that I tried too hard and that I missed the point. I never stopped trying. I started submitting my work and going to poetry slams in high school. When I got to college and I was informed that I could major in poetry, I changed majors right away. I got to learn about contemporary artists like Robert Drake who creates poems in a hundred and forty characters, and John Ashbery who created the Sestina. But my favorite classes were the workshops, where I could hear what my peers where saying and have my own poems ripped a part so that they could be clearer and have more imagery to them. I could talk to professors who would question every word and every line so that I would fit the form better and in a way that I could take with me and add to other poems.�

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Voice of Eve Issue Two  
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