Two of My Latest Published Poems

Following up on my last post—Three Poems to be Published—I can now post two of them, below. (Once a magazine comes out, the rights revert back to the author). The first is from the magazine Constellations; the second, from the British magazine Seaside Gothic.

The One-Time Grandma

Was only four
the one time ever
she came to see me

brought me a truck
filled with hard candy
doors opened, tires rolled

just this one gauzy image—
her abundant, smiling face
craning down to me

a face that held a theater
I couldn’t know
of cobwebs and cold corners

of unpainted pain in triplicate
and difficult wishes boiling in pots
on an ancient stove

ears that held the screaming
of her sister being raped
over and over
by a mob of men

and of distant death
and death too close
at the hands of thugs and militias

hate, rape, thievery and murder
in the pogrom of 1905
as it had been for Jews
for millenniums

What Happened When We Emerged from the Ocean, Anyway

What happened when we 
emerged from the ocean, anyway
returned from eternity
and the Moses shores

Reborn in the Jersey lights— 
the high sheen of industrial
blood and glitzy sin

Here on the boardwalk
where kids fly across lit towers
and lizard eyes spy from wild rides

The wooden coaster tattoos 
the horizon like a snake goddess,
great wheels topple to the music
of clatter and screams

A cavalcade of plush figures,
necklace of chance stands and fry huts,
where lunatic visages frame dark portals 
with invitations to cheap seduction 

Ghosts of Freud and Coney Island
yet watch from the grandstands
play Fascination with Madame Twisto 
and the Mule-Faced Boy

Ten-wheelers tear the ancient sands
flowers show from the boxes
of jeweled motels where Jews
and Italians once shared radio songs 
of Rosemary Clooney and Johnnie Ray