PoetryIssue 17 | March 2013

Two poems by Maria Apichella


Steering round roads, flagged by associations
I see pieces of bone in the hills, woven
in grass and stony bristle along the paths;
a jaw lies open in a stream.
I have been up there before and I’ll go again.
Down here I lift up my eyes to the relics
in the hills, to a tractor boy grown up,
who winced as he flattened the things around him.
He stood with me in the valley;
faced me in the bracken,
bellowing not for the divine but for me    
his canticle, the call of imagined water.
He was born with suspicion in his throat,
I kinetic with spirit.
Together we traced the borders,
trod the foothills,
rolled the foam flecked waves, the gritty beaches,
the salt cold depths of his home.
He wanted to be a dragon-tailed warrior.
He spoke in a language I could only feel. 
There are bones in the memory
of that boy who shambled off,
no forwarding address.
I stayed here
hovering steep on the brink,
jittery with my own longing, which he pressed into me
a recurring pain searing the dark tissue,
the marrow,
the cells of all the   guts I’ve got.

My foot would have slipped but the Rescuer
was already there, and knew the whole boring story.
He caught me like a scent, a look.

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About the author

Maria Apichella teaches online for the University of Maryland, Europe, and is in the midst of her PhD in English and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University. You can find her work in places such as Envoi, Magma, Scintilla Press, and Sentinel Literary Quarterly. Her work will also appear in The Book of Euclid & Other stories & Poems. She was shortlisted for the 2012 Bridport Prize and the Cinnamon Press Short Poetry Collection Award, 2012.

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