PoetryIssue 23 | November 2015

Cretan Love Letter

by Emily Linstrom

It was so easy, in Greece
to be 22 with you, fighting in the cobbled streets
while our landlady drank her ouzo and advised us
to marry already, for God’s sake

She should have convinced me that
happy women howl and hurl
Achillian sandals out of windows,
wear matching lingerie and say Hail Mary—
while turning the bed;

I could have learned the discipline of staying,
of shooing off the choir a woman hears
when she realizes she’s done better
than her savior.

I never told you: sometimes I’d wonder if vestal + virgin
was just another way of saying
you had me once, never again.   

Men like you were made for growing old
on peninsulas, folk and fallow,
Byronic only because you share an appetite,
and penchant for cruelty.

We might have stayed and prospered.

About the author

Emily Linstrom has eaten fire and walked on glass for the likes of Cirque du Soleil, The Slipper Room, Brooklyn Circus Co., New York Fashion Week, The Bowery Poetry Club, and various short film installations and music videos. Her writing and photography have been featured by/in Eunoia Review, Goblin Fruit, Nailed Magazine, Project Naked, and Rose Red Review.

Read our current issue:


Two poems by Anne Babson
Vignette, Townhouse, 9 a.m. by Troy Cunio
Night Becomes Day Over the West by Megan Foley
Yukon River Aurora by D. B. Goman
Two Poems by David Havird
Cretan Love Letter by Emily Linstrom
Holland by Rick Mullin
Fear in Kenya by Kristina Pfleegor
The Lounge Lizard by Ed Shacklee
Two Poems by Sarah J. Sloat
Night Flight by Vicki Stannard
Koinonia Farms by Alina Stefanescu
Thessaloniki, Four a.m. by Anastasia Vassos
Imaginary Oceans by Jason Warren
Two Poems by F. J. Williams

Postcard prose

It’s Salty by Kelly Hill

Travel notes

Anchorage in the Great Land by Karen Benning
The Value of Small Money by Megan Hallinan
Screensaver by Sandra Larson
Thirty Cents by Tommy McAree
Gokarna by Kate McCahill
Going Places by Rachel Miller-Howard
Susanville CA: Notes From The Road by Susan Volchok