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Jacob’s Ladder

By Javier Acosta Poetry

Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely God is present in this place, and I did not know it!” Shaken, he said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the abode of God, and that is the gateway to heaven.”                      …

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Tentatively, Religion

By Christian Detisch Poetry

What! Did the Hand then of the Potter shake?                             —Rubaiyat The kick wheel turns against the spondees of her feet —clop-clop—upon the floor: amorphous clay shines like a seal’s skin. We are uncarved blocks, says the Tao. Hum-hum, says the wheel. And I am Yahweh at dust, she says, her hands tucked and carving…

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Elijah in the Desert

By Christian Detisch Poetry

after Washington Allston Growing up, the coke ovens were open ears I uttered nothing to. Men labored here to impress themselves into the landscape, now rust & snake pits, the tang of copper in Dunlap Creek. Each night the ATV engines protest the approaching evening’s indifference. Its stormy immanence. In this desert, I scoured books,…

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Needle

By Ricardo Pau-Llosa Poetry

A lost man might pour his jug onto the sand to feel one with the desert, and for that moment he is cleansed of heat and thirst. But freedom is not a moment’s craft. Pinned by memory, he will regret the gesture and the surrender. The sullen break of journey onto knees will not console…

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Lazarus

By Ricardo Pau-Llosa Poetry

What but poverty earned him your respect that when our fates were turned he is called to act as cruelly as I did then? Lot’s wife turned back in shock, in pity perhaps, and for this she was robbed of flesh and name. Why plant in us the startle and curious glance to countermand that…

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To My Son Yacine

By Abdellatif Laâbi Poetry

My beloved son, I received your letter where you spoke to me like an adult told me all about how hard you studied at school and where I saw that your passion for learning chased all the darkness and ugliness away as you delved into the secrets of the big book of life You’re confident…

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Texas Blues

By Mark Wagenaar Poetry

Someone pulls a burning splinter from the devil’s thigh ————————————————& holds it up to the sun— August in Texas. And slides it down the frets to get the dying cicadas going, half wheeze & half-halted gospel hum, if it’s Blind Willie a hundred years ago, Blind Pilgrim born a stone’s throw from here, if it’s…

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The Trick

By Mark Wagenaar Poetry

I’ve always loved that scene in The Seventh Seal where Jof, poor broke Jof the juggler, rushes back to tell his wife Mia that he’s just seen the virgin & child, so close to me that I could have touched her, but Mia is skeptical, wants to know what they’ll eat this winter, wants to…

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Twenty-Five Years of Fresh Air

By George David Clark Poetry

With no walls or ceiling to block it, the breeze shuffled my hair. I was chained, but to a comfortable chair on a single, electric boxcar that rolled through the world at thirty-five miles an hour. IVs kept me fed and watered and a catheter kept me clean. My jumpsuit, white at sentencing, splotched in…

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Resurrection at Cookham

By Greg Miller Poetry

Stanley Spencer, 1924–27 Cascading white roses! Their throne arbored shade’s —-“curious scent” Spencer recalled while painting. Those Seven Sisters perfume ——-my heart. God the Father’s broad: solid ————–as a Giotto Madonna, his curve-plane’s not ours. His hand’s in his son’s hair. Christ, free, in his white gown, cradles three babies, one naked, in folds of…

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