Editors Letter As issue 3 began to take form I was delighted to see the exceptional quality and diversity of the poetry and work coming through. This particular issue involved some labour pains and some ongoing negotiation with many of the poets and artists. Our feature poet for this issue is Hannah Greenburg, Hannah’s poetry stood out to me because it felt very delicate on the tongue but at the same time deals with some very strong and powerful issues and I enjoyed the impact that particular crafting had on me personally. I am also delighted to welcome Sarah Snowneil Ali as emerging poet. Sarah’s work is both well crafted and has a good meter and rhythm, again Sarah has a strong and individual voice which I felt stood in strong contrast to our featured poet but both Hannah & Sarah’s work took some work and many readings as I tried to approach these poems from different angles and moods. The feature poem was chosen for one reason and one reason only, which was that it had been submitted very early on in the year for issue 1 and it was still with me as a poem which brought a new perspective to me by means of its strong imagery and dour humour. Finally, amongst all the exceptional works in this issue I would to draw attention to the work of Leigh Herrick with Preying Mantra which again was submitted earlier in the year. I did not include Leigh’s work initially due to the strong political nature of issue 2 as I felt I needed to make sure it was not obscured by the other more political works. I implore you to take the time to read this piece aloud as it has a strong aural impact. As always, Rob Annison-Clark has worked very hard to make this issue have the visual impact that makes Social-i magazine unique and fresh! The images are wonderful, well chosen and well placed. A huge thanks to all the contributors to this magazine, we have enjoyed reading your work and are delighted to have your work in this edition. We would also like to say a huge thanks to all of you who have followed Social-i magazine from the start and for all your comments of encouragement to us at the Social-i editorial team and the wonderful poets this magazine has brought us into contact with.
Henry Clayton p.4 Alice Woods p.15 Joshua Goymer p.18 & p.58 Rosetta Baker p.30 & p.52 Yasmin LaCam p.33 Branko Gulin p.40 & p.48 Ernest Williamson III p.54 &p.55
KJ Hannah Greenberg p.6
Porkies by Ponchosteele p.16
Sarah Snowneil Ali p.20
-Other Outstanding Works-
Sergio A. Ortiz p.34 Peycho Kanev p.35 Leila A. Fortier p.36 David McLean p.38 Leigh Herrick p.42 Paul Handley p.51 aMan Bloom p.53 KJ Hannah Greenberg p.56 P.A.Levy p.57
Edited by Lorraine Kashdan-Lougher Designed by Rob Annison-Clark Front Cover Detail of ‘Week 14’ by Rosetta Baker
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Untitled by H
Featured Poet KJ Hannah Greenberg
Pushcart Prize nominee, KJ Hannah Greenberg, although, infrequently abetted by her hibernaculum of imaginary hedgehogs, spends her time matchmaking words. One of her cutest couples is “balderdash” and “xylophone.” To wit, Hannah has placed her work with hundreds of publications, including:Australia’s Language and Culture Magazine and Antipodean SF, Israel’s Fallopian Falafel, and The Jerusalem Post, the UK’s Morpheus Tales and The Mother Magazine and the USA’s Poetica and The Externalist.
Ill-Planned Legacies Young lifeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s anguish, at some energetic level, unavoidably gets mired with superstitions, The subsequent analysis of which shows social guardiansâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; imperfect gneiss. Eponymous to a fault, sanctioned sanity suggests protecting against attack or injury. Nonetheless, upper strata repeatedly insist the onus rests on mundane workings. Cultural norms, it seems, at the cost of greater decay, select worldviews powered by gas, Also uphold the stoichiometry of bilious postulations married to pomp. Whereas selling out, based upon sculpted assumptions, provides odd relief, even laughter, Unplanned pit stops, plus tantrums from lonely children, prove otherwise. . Annular ideas, however incipient, explore, evoke and champion the cheat; huffy, Gross displays of caring, of elluvium still wash up which stigmatize dogs and gin.
My heart’s cry bed, My heart’s cry bed, its cornerstone crafted From motes malevolent, from games ill-drafted, But played, repeatedly, among displaced victims Their dogs, their cantaloupes, Or other new-found vice. Prison or party, rum shakes insides Like business negotiated away, while astride Deferences lingering on the edge; Our mental refrigerators fill With vast amounts of leafy greens. False accusations, long seasons’ worth, Killed a clerk whose untimely berth Positioned her against unnatural amounts Of stuff employed to defeat Cantankerous cardiovascular sickness. Next September, let’s frolic, Makes waves of enzymes anabolic, Chest to chest’s best given Common medications’ effect On attentions misplaced by emotions defrauded. ---------------------------------
Then the Wind.
Ambergel wisps of newborn hair, amuse bouche of life, materialized, Quickly filled palaces assigned to lasses less vested than our principality?s. Hence her silvered flakes, faceward falling, complex, corded life, involved no Binding. Our designee?s kirtle failed, despite all, couldn?t wholly ward off chilblains. Swiftly, drugs, heralds, clerics were summoned, adamant to buoy her revised amnion. Such embryonic buds stay sombulant, like geezers in old, overstuffed chairs, For whom sun, humidity, heat, as well as oxygen hooked to chests, bring life, Beckon support from doctors regarding ?inguinal hernias,? other ?normal deviations.? Accordingly, select bottom-clothed nurslings, akin to elders, weigh in like colored Stones. Chert, topaz, lapis. Their short life?s an uncertain journey, twelve months at breast, Sans professional redoubt, minus medical portcullises, exclusive of traditional protections. Still, the pernicious will to live, to sift obvolute fluids, to strive, to conquer, Evoking royal dreams of vanquishing quintessence privations, of thwarting Trebuchets, of the worst kind, no matter how often those foes etch vulnerable pia mater. Recall that agrariangroups would compensate their women, were wont to gift effort. Moderns, unfortunately, ululate nothing for preemies? parents, tribute even less Toward motherhearts whose promontories lay exposed, vestigial structures shattered.
When children stop breathing, we would benefit from segregating space, from temporalizing, Wee aliquoted selves, their tiny sered limbs, trunks, faces, evermore. Those champions Emerged opposed to fate, ran contrary to strictures for amputated food, drink, love. Consider, that suppression by kin, plus newborn dependence, makes monsters of insouciant Institutions of learning, Governance, deviant arts, sinister shadenfreud, each and every Echo vitriolically among missed, ?righteous? phalangy. Then, schooled men hide their ignominy. Thereafter, life?s salt rooms shed more than sweat. Forgetting takes days, years. Sometimes, inhaled ions? powers fall short, counsel misspeaks, solace overlooks. When wrapped in ushanka memories, it?s tough to acknowledge fault. So, medicos continue to task and tally daily, leaving would-be parents embracing bedtime Retinues filled with lachrymose sighs, dyspeptic trances; childless milk, mislaid smiles. Lambkins? portentous grasping, sleepless dreams, sweet burps, taste tart under the yaupons.
Not the Lavender Hills
It wasn?t the hills behind the school, calling children to pull up lavender clods. Couldn?t have been the rav praying forward the rain, dew, all other necessary moisture. Wasn?t the mom benching lecht, profiting The People by reaching heavenward. The mayor was not culpable, nor were the city?s pigeons, those pink-grey messengers. Don?t think on the cabbies, otherwise busied with regret, mercantile dreams, taxes. Traffic didn?t stop because of the factory hands, some sauced with paycheck galivanting. The hospital marms barely counted as responsible after long days of tending plus housework. I believe, as well, no pensioners chose which buds got harvested before flowering. Rather, somewhere, in NGO offices, amanuenses whispered to bosses being humped, Also, at regional press bureaus, hirelings, with scant high school educations, supposed, aloud, As did assistants to the most vainglorious of public officials allegedly reckoning how Clerks, taking salary from would-be captains, might be right that kow-towing could mollify. Hence, our enemies didn?t need to package themselves among armaments. Those fiends hadn?t had to dirty suits, sully knuckles, bleed from noses, in battle. As adversaries they?d have been silly to mess with global intrigue given market cost. Contemporary villains worried not about chipping manicures; they were favored for their oil.
Small Payment for a Protracted Span
Maidenhood?s a small payment for a protracted span of sartorial retribution. Until next season, anyway, prints featuring fields or woods will Be so completely eclipsed by snowflake patterns that fabric stressing forbs, Whether needle, bract, or foliole, might be, perhaps, better served in stagnate pools. Such vigor as communal suppers deal, less their ergotic mistakes, Seem scant remuneration for feeding crowds mind-numbing wastes of time. Stewarts of such events contend, incessantly, that fixations with compelling thoughts Leave kitchens covered in grease or overwrought by mummified hamsters. It?s nice to acquiesece to those with whom we share the future, yet That energy remains the province of goodwives needing sugar cubes, not bitters. For all intents and purposes, cultivating bonds means moving past regrets, Indicating who is and who?s not dancing alongside of imperfectly sprung witnesses.
Cutting Between Sheets: Fantastic Solutions to Mundane Problems
Cutting between sheets, applying new colors to traditional problems, brings Nuance where encaustic leave-takings, all damar resin, plus beeswax, pigments, Otherwise might soak up the secret burrows indigenous to media watchers. Likewise, collecting premium products; expension du nom, Encourages graduate students to regroup, to unsheathe cell phones, Tame web pages, hold fast to territories of words, images, extra applications. If such youngsters were happenchance trapped without benefit of freshly squeezed Lemon water, they?d pull nails, expunge traces of bezoars, halitosis, body odor, Boogie some bacchanalias until the sun could glamour half the world?s sequins.
Self II by Alice Woods
Featured Poem Ponchosteele
Porkies My pig and me we sit and drink through the night, He’s so silent in his cork-tailed way but we get on just fine, With a crisp white or a full-blooded red We sit and sow, just on our own, And when they asked, “so who’s the pig?” “well”, I answer, “he’s my friend because without my pig I would be dry”, and they say……..
“Pack up the pork and dry the rind, You’re coming with us, to farm the mind” “but will there be room for my pig and me?” “Just you my friend”, they say, “just you.” So the first night there I cried for my pig and his sidewinder tail But night turned to day to night to dreams of porked claret And they had enough and dumped me on the side, And there I spied, with so dry eyes, on the back of the wagon, My corking pig, and oh how we re-acquainted, We had so much fun that the sun bled dry the rays of your sober ways And then we slept, arm in arm, to drink another day To the sound of them And oh how we laughed Until they said, “No my friend, it’s terminal, we will soon be saying goodbye.” But we didn’t cry, we carried straight on, drowning their words And swearing new ones in allegiance to friends, peace, love and everything. I loved my pig and I loved you. But now that I lay, in the dark, empty eyes, With just one sidewinder twist, away I am from your lies.
alt’R’uism by Jo
Emerging Poet Sarah Snowneil Ali
Sarah Snowneil Ali is a self proclaimed â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;poetessâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; and dreamer from Beirut, Lebanon who founded Atelier Poetica in the Spring of 2009. Atelier Poetica is a project aimed at publishing Arab authors who write in a foreign language. Combining art, poetry, words & literature, through chapbooks, creativity and poems made into art. The Flower Girl, a book of poems, by her is the first completed chapbook by Atelier Poetica and is being sold in Beirut & Dubai.
Untitled I would like it to stop. This unrelenting summer remembrance of unfiltered heat scathing sweat floating skirts tangled legs our worn out bodies come the first angry light. Thoughts they tap in at dusk always, my inconsistent determination to forget you falters as the sun weeps in the distance of nightfall. Cringing blank solace of an empty bed mattress of stone I sink, like drops of humidity on my viewless window. Damned star signs vague compatibility the start of usas clear as our dĂŠjĂ vu our paths crossing on narrow asphalt politics, the press maybe Beirut is too small for fate. Now, nothing is left but my heaving sighs a ragged lament I sing in the night, charred and ruthless is the blame I singe onto my flesh and lie next to your shadow finding there its guiltless mirror. Autumn is now with you in the jacket you wear from cold and hold your hands so rigid in your uncomfortable picture pose. That necklace you wear the one Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve traced as delicately
as your attachment to it, my hushed fingers gliding on brown beads still wrapped around your neck those same notions your Marxist morals manifesto so proud yet no regard for common decency. And I, whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s voice you said was too close on the phone that last time eluding you in my unattainable proximity the wince you must have felt knowing my lips will never be that close to whisper in your obedient ear, not my shadowed face now fading, not my burning eyes at your lack of care like the sudden wind in spring, before your uncautioned charm before the sliver of emotion you spat out then ran childlike and callous on streets too narrow to forget you where tight walls have grazed your skin chipped off and bleeding, left open on your damaged shell in your fragmented self, and the tired earth rarely makes a sound at our pounding feet to whisper of what has passed between the dawn and our lips still I know the sea will someday tell.
Gaza in ash
He is carrying her covered in ash eyes still open lying on a hospital table in bright neon looking up but never seeing anything, he kisses her face holds her head disarray of hair black, thick aged by a missile a coward tank the houses of rubble surround demolition from above but when we pray the sky is ours to hold palms facing upwards begging for mercy demanding revenge the expanse of a liberty to reach for but never touch. Lifelessness so abundant here Gaza they are killing you little childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s feet are sticking out of white sheets ravaged open for a camera to disturb peace to show everyone how small this little girl is how her woollen sweater chosen for warmth now holds no heartbeat not even blood from above it came the crushing.
A father squats in the corner wall behind him peeling his daughters three, five, seven, dead she says “May God give you others” to die? To be greyed and ashen and limp? Her eyes are still open but they see nothing they never knew freedom only filthy rags and plastic bags a glory army meters away human cages children’s fingers always grey faces smudged with ash and winter small bodies aged by the shades of unrestrained war. Gaza I have wept. Useless. I have forgotten. The shame of everyday complaints compared to Gaza I am doing nothing and most of me doesn’t want to know doesn’t want to see screams of the suppressed innocence drained Gaza I died today but you are living in hell and I wonder when all of it will end.
Beirut Intersection He said it made him sad the old fashioned flute sharp elegy at the breath exhaled to mourning and the vendor on the street selling sadness for a dollar. All around people are walking on inconstant pavements their soles of feet now charcoal battle ridden and exhaust smudged thankfully though always to be in the latest Ă la mode florescent Italian sandals which are really made in some plastic producing dingy factory in Lebanon. All along, the afternoon summer swamp of tourists, beggars, suntanned posers foreign languages at every tongue I miss Arabic. A man further away primeval groans from a thirsty dry throat implores cars entwined in traffic to make way clear the road frantic and almost insane he gestures black leather bag caught between his arm and damp waist his striped shirt tame and office like he lunges again defaming the people with no conscience to move out of the way confusion filters through on the intersection where he stands causing apathetic tourists and ray bans
to stop and turn their heads in raw obedience at the expression of reality at the uncontrolled tone of voice which rises and breaks like the salt water on Raouche like nerves being played with a taught violin bow. Intrusion of undiluted emotions in the upper lip sweat of day between the car exhausts and yawns finally traffic eases from afternoon orange to blue of night. His child is sick immobile in a car caught between indifference and concrete at the beginning of the standstill street tauntingly 50 meters away from the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s best hospital the wailing manâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grey face, cigarette lips, arms motioning when the car carrying his own pained body passes next to him hurry he says, now silent and only motioning. The battered red car speeds down the road and he with his black leather bag collected higher into his chest with a gripping churn he runs down the street a man of 48 shameless in his pain and his unhindered love he runs on the uneven asphalt awkward and panting his body now seeming frail as it juggles the weight of worry and age he runs while many of us in the city stand around and watch.
Planted with a complacent smile all business and brisk. Outside, dust floats slithering on the surface I wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mind dragging my feet beyond your plane of vision peeling off the black and cotton like unending pain. I think I may be less sane that I seem. With the sand I would merge then rise, and for my water this suffering I would drink.
The sun a darker shade against imagined blue now the afternoon will give way to night and I will give way to you. Hands to skin nearness twinkling laughs breathing constant sparkle of a cigarette. The heat outside is waiting but in here close to beige walls papers at my desk the hum of the a/c all the work I have let my fingers trace at the keyboard with a hidden smile as though it was your neck in here I wait for you.
Week 6 Take II b
by Rosetta Baker
Other Outstanding Works
Untittled by Yasmin LaCam
what I want to be is thread mark live coal a distinct aptitude the hawfinch song with a hawk owl tail in short it is a different offering hounding my heart he is a well built panic room the minimal significance of a phonetic expression on the tongue
Inking your body with nothing On my very knotted skin Erases the corner of our ghetto Returns these slashed out eyes to the executionerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Wall of a sad and lonely youth.
Sergio A. Ortiz
I count to 11
the impossibility of life is in his beauty: the beauty is a flower in the cemeterynew life and old death: dung-beetle pushing his own little treasure, and sunshine, always sunshine why? I hit the window and my phone starts to ring, I count to 11 and it stops. somebody wants to speak to me, to listen to my voice, somebody needs me why? I want to set on fire all the pigeons on the square, I want to drive my index finger on the edge of the knife I will send my love in a package to Africa the phone is silent I water the flowers.
the mother of madness
the mother of madness is fingers that never touch much, a blind eye staring intently at where feeling might be, it is words empty as â&#x20AC;&#x153;empathy,â&#x20AC;? drowning in a semantic cesspool with devils and heaven, with all the devils that ever were in any heaven, every category of thing that ever went missing. and mother madness is the slow dance of passion in flesh expecting shortly to get down and dirty and dead. it is here where worlds might have been but words got left instead
we do not touch
we do not touch but carry love like blood to the blade as impatient hormones dance in us their forgetful intolerance. bodies are less slender than expected; they are not fragile, but relax themselves like devils a while, to let light in and nightmares, to pack history into their skin enough to pretend they have lived. we do not touch enough, but carry impatient love like blood and nothing within. we bear careful absences there, they fill the skin
Liberaton of Iraq
q by Branko Gulin
Preying Mantra (A Poem for Voices by Leigh Herrick)
You can hear the prayer as they drop the bombs the bombs the bombs over Baghdad You can see they are entirely sincere as they drop the bombs the bombs in the night that fall over prayer the bombs the bombs over Baghdad You can hear the prayer as they drop the bombs the human buzz the bees of voice the human sound beyond the bombs the voice in prayer the voice in song You can hear the sound beneath the bombs You can hear them singing in Baghdad You can plant your corn You can stand your ground You can sow your seed You can raise your flag You can celebrate hegemony the Generals state is swift and sure You can hear the prayers where theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re singing there Where clusters spread as they spread the bombs the no face no name falling bombs the bombs of no throat for the song at night you can hear the sound above bombs You can hear You can hear the prayer over Baghdad
I found a foot I found a measure I found a pause // the fatigued caesura I found a sentence of explanation I found an eye for the worn sonata I found support for troops and terror I found a heart to fail each tear I found the repeated repentant beat I found a body delivered to screams I found a woman whose eyes spread wide I found a child with womanhoodâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s eyes I found the women wailing at the sites I found the women between bombs in the night Each cry each cry each heart each head Each eye each eye each leg each stand Each lip each ear each heart each mind I found a soldier who refused to lie: I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; wanna be the symbol, he said between drags, for who deserves more, who less, to die.
I am listening to the news I am watching the news I believe in the news I believe in the bombs I believe in the Baâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;aths I believe in the Shiias I believe in the Shiites I believe in freedom And the word messiah I believe in the bombs I believe in MOAB I believe I believe in a democratic Islam You can hear the prayer as they drop the bombs and the moms and dads in Baghdad run to find their childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s missing limbs in the rubble of lessons not yet learned You can hear the prayer as they drop the bombs The voices vibrate in the unlit sky You can plant your corn You can stand your ground You can sow your seed as they drop the bombs where they are sincere tonight over Baghdad You can raise your flag You can stand your ground You can as they pass You can as they fly You can as they pass over Baghdad
Our forces went in. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s been a tough day. 12 went missing. 10 are dead. One lobbed a grenade. It hit our tent. Tensions run high. Missiles are aimed. One of our own. Just lobbed it in. I heard about the Oscars. I missed Michael Moore. I went to the bathroom. I listened for bombs. I watch for war in this strange land. Enduring Freedom. Freedom Endured! We have a mission here near Baghdad!
Today I bought a house. Today I bought a car. Today I bought a laptop (Dell). Today I went to the Mega Mall. Today I sipped Starbuck espresso. Today I read some Blake and Twain. Today I thought of Christ on the Mount. Today like today is always the same. Today I thought of America. Today of England. Today of Spain. Today I thought of Germany. Today of Italy. Today of Japan. Today I thought of Bush the Younger. Today of Putin. Today of Sharon. Today I thought Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve nothing to do. Today I thought I do what I can.
Closer to Baghdad stocks will rally Closer to Baghdad stocks will rise You can hear the prayers as they drop the bombs You can hear the bell / ring between rounds You can sow your seed You can stand your ground You can eat your corn as they drop the bombs You can hear the prayers in the night in the sounds You can hear the prayers as they drop the bombs the human buzz the bees of song You can hear the voices as the voices throng You can hear the prayers above the bombs you can hear them pass again and again You can as they fly You can as they pass
as they pass
Remembering World W
War 1 by Branko Gulin
Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the Nature of the Beast, Boyz (by Leigh Herrick)
So they left
and now the poppies grow tall and red and all over the place and wild in the fields Glory has returned -- is the name for what may never be retrieved
I stare with inspired loathing at my computer screen. Willing it to move. Road rage. I canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t stamp on my brakes. Coffee flows like lava in my gut. 20 years hence we mock the time we wasted. A failing in red that is not mine. Error message. A road to nowhere. Did I land between sites? A few steps short or overcast? Not available. The computers of Hal and Isaacâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s robots must be deceived by a Workaround. Term of art in the lexicon of the technically proficient. Reboot. A survey response requested by the help desk. An addendum that I crave: E) Once again, polite yet ineffective.
Week 10 by Rosetta Baker
WHAT’S A META FOR?
“Like giving an after-dinner mint to a dead man’s heartache,” a line came drifting in and settled in my mind, after falling asleep to Camus. Then the rain came and some noises in the night in my room, and the still darkness kept me awake, so the line, “like giving an after-dinner mint to a dead man’s heartache,” came floating in on the silence and I woke up enough to write it down. Later I wondered what it meant or might mean and thought of how best to use it, since I knew it was a poetic gift and could be made to mean something, then I realized that it was like giving an after-dinner mint to a dead man’s heartache, and nothing more.
A Season of Mardi Gras by Ernest Williamson III
Jamaca Love Jamaca Dance by Ernest Williamson III
Arab men, whose Hebrew betters mine by generations, sit roadside smoking cheap cigarettes. They alternate waving hands and rocks. I accelerate just a little. The road I travel to teach EFL is frequented by all sorts; those with yellow license plates and those with white. Sometimes, sloppy trucks, whose chickens or crates of watermelon threaten to create hazards, pass without anyone’s official placard. Months ago, I took a holiday on a beautiful mountain. Although my guestroom’s walls were a montage of water marks, of mold, and of chipping plaster, the diningroom was resplendid with beautiful food and with beautiful service. In the midst of the emerald cucumbers, the white goat cheese, the slim, pink slices of salmon and the bright red tomatoes, I paused to consider that the waiters, ever quick to refill glasses or to top off shared platters, had an indigenous accent. Their smiles and hair were doppelgangers to those of my kin, but their articulated vowels and consonants differed. I watched a bit and noticed, as well, that their gestures were not those of my nation. My framesmith, too, comes from that other tribe. With skills more and more frequently relegated to nostalgia, he captures the color and texture of my paintings and prints in wood and plaster. His bosses pay him a small wage; there exists a tiered system. When I buy vegetables, the shopkeeper and his helpers assist me in discerning among their many heaps; they understand that I purchase only fruits and greens approved by specific assemblies. If I reach for the “wrong” cherries or for an “incorrect” head of lettuce, these men gently redirect me to the comestibles that my family eats. And yet, during my village’s times of quiet prayer and of other reverence, those same cousins shoot fireworks or blare their public address system late at night. They find no fault in chopping down our mutual forests or in constructing houses where my brothers paid steep mortgages. In our land of sun and heat, there is more that bewilders me than the bray of donkeys or the goings on in open air market. Specifically, I have yet to fully comprehend my relationship to Arab men. KJ Hannah Greenberg
They Don’t Build Cathedrals Anymore
Out of town we are but strangers in a strange land with homeless dust drying in our mouths and disappointment etched like claw scars down our cheeks. Almost horror struck we stared from behind barbed wire fences as oxide red skeletons stretched up into the cod-scaled greyness. . Two cranes take to the dance floor performing a slow motion tango. The beat of blueprints synchronizes their movements; arms swing angular, all brute force and sweat. As wonderment pushed grit from our eyes we stood like corner shop natives waiting for that moment when the glass dome was to be set like a diamond. We gasped at the thought that automatic doors would welcome us inside to walk upon the marbled floors, and to listen to the chorus of cash tills singing: “Hallelujah” as they exchange all our prayed for dreams with credit card receipts; consumer redemption available 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., even on Sundays. For now we have seen the light, nine out of ten of us agree, you have to buy icons to obtain retail spirituality.
Anger in the child
by Joshua Goymer