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To My Lovers

By (June 1, 2017) No Comment

Jean Follain, I tried to face the animal
but blinked when I saw the billboard.

Anna Swir, I laughed in the Atlantic’s face
while choking on the ocean inside me.

Louis Simpson, one white naked bulb
illuminates nothing. We cram our bodies
into dark houses together.

Walt Whitman, the song of myself was stolen
by little ones calling me mother, meaning mammal
lost to autonomous, unique space.

Judah al-Harizi, the mother’s lute is beautiful
in portraits. I waited for the painter; performed
appropriated delight. Lies I’ve posed come back
to taunt me. Speak to me of music without
instruments. Speak to me of the nights.

Wislawa Szymborska, the grain of sand in my stomach
keeps growing. The courier calls from
the kitchen. Who can swear to be human
in a fetal position?

Francis Ponge, give me one objet-jeu
for the family road trip. One relief
that isn’t acid. Have you written the diaper,
the carseat, the creamed carrot mush?

Denise Levertov, what more must I witness
before absorbing the presence of a pink linen apron,
the smother of unassuming feminine clothes?

Li Po, I cannot go home again. I cannot
devise lyrics to embellish the prison.

Antonio Machado, of course the ride looks
lovely from the window. You are a man riding off
in trains denied me.

Gloria Anzaldua, I will crossroad my heart.
Please Gwendolyn Brooks, hold my hand
through terminal hopscotch. —Joseph Brodsky,
stars twinkle, pillowcase tears, pinchmarks.

Anna Blandiana, whisper my name
in Romanian. It’s the only poem
I crave from a grave forever.

Dear Czeslaw Milosz, give me
a border, a beacon,
a bough
from which to hang
this cradle. Teach me
to rock it. Show me the word
for what happens
when the walls and
the angels tumble down.

Alina Stefanescu was born in Romania and currently lives in Alabama with her partner and three opinionated mammals. Her poetry collection, Stories to Read Aloud Your Fetus, is available for pre-order from Finishing Line Press. Find Alina online at www.alinastefanescu.com and @aliner.