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week of April 19 - 25, 2004

Our sixth annual Yom Hashoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) issue.

Eliyahu Abramson
Cara Alson
Helen Bar-Lev
Jim Bennett
Tom Berman
Joop Bersee
Bodo
Margaret Boles
Gerald Bosacker
Len Bourret
Alex Braverman
Tony Bush
John Davis
Daniel A. Elijah
Thomas Fortenberry
David Fraser
Maryann Hazen Stearns
Kristin Johnson
Philip Johnson
Tammy Kaiser
Rachel Kann
Ward Kelley
Miriam N. Kotzin
Donna Kuhn
Meredith Karen Laskow
Josie Lawson

BECOME A POET OF THE WEEK
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Death of a Mauve Bat! | Sinzibuckwud! | We Put Things In Our Mouths | A Man With No Teeth Serves Us Breakfast
I'd Like to Bake Your Good | Stolen Mummies| Brendan Constantine is My Kind of Town | Up Liberty's Skirt | Feeding Holy Cats | Mowing Fargo
I'm a Jew, Are You
| Lizard King of the Laundromat
| I Am My Own Orange County | Paris: It's The Cheese | Poetry Super Highway
Rick's Bookmarks |
Cobalt Poets | E-mail Rick | Upcoming Readings | Who The Hell Is Rick

 

 

 

 

 

Cricket Lee
cricketscorner@earthlink.net

Bio (auto)

Cricket is just a guy trying to figure it all out. He was born in Long Beach, California where he will make his return within the coming year. He has had poetry and/or fiction published in RATTLE, Rip Rap, PEARL, The Allegheny Review, Colere, Chiron Review, Loop and Tebot Bach Press' anthology of California poetry, So Luminous the Wildflowers. He has upcoming work in PEARL, Rearview Quarterly, The Penwood Review and Slipstream. In addition, he is editor of Re)verb, a very very small press poetry mag

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Cricket Lee and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Savta

My grandmother is old -
well into her eighth decade,
and no matter how coherent she may be,
no matter how sharp the mind still is,
to her she was old long ago.

Her mother was sent to America
at the age of thirteen,
a fact that would mean survival
and loss, and loss, and more loss.

When my grandmother was nineteen
Germany attacked Poland without warning.
For the next few years as countries fell
so did her family, her heritage,
her whole culture.

She sparingly tells me about what
she had to endure,
and what her family would not.
She tears up when she recounts
stories of how newborn babies
were dropped from third story
hospital windows.

And even with this genocide,
this hate against her people,
she wears her love of her culture
in her heart, and smiles it upon me
without expecting return,
without making me feel
that I could never understand
even though we both know
I can't.

And though I wasn't there to live it,
and though I don't pray
the way she does,
she trickles her faith through bloodlines
a faith that will reemerge
when she is long gone.

Gabriel A. Levicky
gabsurreal@juno.com

Bio (auto)

Gabriel Ariel Levicky was born in the former Czechoslovakia into the family of the Holocaust survivors. After going through the series of indoctrinated school system, he accomplished basic education and soon after joined the ranks of many skeptics.

This "protective coat" allowed him to see a troubled and confused society from the different point of view and soon he joined the unofficial dissident movement (Charter 77), led by V·clav Havel.

As a young poet, inspired by the American Beat and music, he embarked on his own search and clandestinely published his first book of poetry Nezn·ma Poèzia (The Unknown Poetry) in 1977-79.

In 1979 he decided to escape the persecution by the State Security and via number of neighboring countries managed to make it to Italy and to the USA.

After a brief sting in NYC, he left for California and settled in San Francisco where he had ran a series of poetry readings as well as got involved with a renewed Beat magazine publication Beatitude, commemorating the late, great American poet Bob Kaufman. In San Francisco he published his second book of poetry The Unknown Poetry # 2, directly linking it to his first Slovak publication.

After so called Velvet Revolution in his native country, GAL has returned back for a short period as deputy editor-in-chief of the bi-weekly Mosty newspaper, published in Prague (in 1996).

Upon returning to the US, he decided to resettle back in NY where he lives since then. He is involved with many poetry projects and readings, ran his own reading Hear & Now in the Raven Cafè in the East Village and has been published in numerous publications nationally and worldwide.

His collection B(lack) & W(hite) Wet Paint Poems, encompassing his NY experience, has been published and released by Xlibris and is available on the Web via: Xlibris, Amazon, Borders, and Barnes & Noble.

He is also a recent author (as Emir Gabpashaberger, the founder and destroyer of Jews For Jihad, orgasmization) of his sporadic, weekly socio-political farce and lampoon, reflecting these trying & hilarious times, poking his below the belt hits at almost everything and everybody. In his spare time ~ he still draws cartoons and constructs collages, called Gablevages.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Gabriel A. Levicky and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

The Miracle
(Or The Dead Men Talkin')
Another true story from The New York Magazine, December 3rd, 2000

"In Tennessee, there is a field filled with rotting corpses.
What scientists have learned by watching bodies decompose
is helping the police crack one unsolved case after another..."



Victorious silicon
And
Soulless Universe For Sale!
Planted tiny life
And
Bloody womb.
Bring me your tired, your dead
And
I will read your future.
There, in the fields of Tennessee.
What can you learn from dead?
That life can not answer?
"Surprising!y, we know little about death,"an expert exclaims.
There is enough supply of living
On the other side
As they ponder over
The maggots rhapsody.
"Death is a process, not an event," a scientist said.
A birth is an event, not a process,
I hear you whisper.
We will be living and dying
Forever, together.
Beyond the wildest imagination.

Michael Levy
MIKMIKL@aol.com

Bio (auto)

Michael levy was born in Manchester, England on the 6th March 1945. After many life experiences and a successful business career he retired to Florida in 1992.

In 1998 Michael established Point of Life, Inc., as a vehicle to project his philosophy and spiritual understanding. The website www.pointoflife.com and the associated newsletter (Point Of Life Global Newsletter) are visited and read by thousands of people around the world every month. Michael is a frequent speaker on radio, television(just a few examples UK; BBC, ITV4..USA; NBC, C-Span, ABC, Howard Stern Show) and he is now a host on Voice America.com radio. He also holds frequent seminars sharing and discusses his views about the purpose of life, finding the peace and enjoyment that lead to a healthy, stress-free life. 

In just a few years he has become a world renowned poet. In 2002 Michael was invited to become a member of the prestigious Templeton Speaker's Bureau.

Michael Levy is the author four books "What is the Point? "Minds of Blue Souls of Gold" "Enjoy Yourself - It's Later Than You Think" and "Invest with a Genius." Michael's poetry and essays now grace many web sites, Journals and Magazines throughout the world.His philosophies have become a major source of Truth, Wisdom and Love for many people. Just one example from many........ The Royal Collage of Psychiatry has recently published two of his works. He has recently become a host on the Point Of Life Show at Voice America.

Web Site: http://www.pointoflife.com 

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Michael Levy and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Eclipse

As the beautiful lady left the room
escorted by two jack boot Nazi's
an aroma of extinction marched in
there was no more music
she had just finished composing
a masterpiece...
Ironic...she called it ‘Eclipse'
she never did come out of the camp
now; the gorgeous form has gone
it is fifty-five years since she disappeared
they are playing her composition tonight
in the illustrious concert hall
nobody there has ever met her
Ah! But;..... the remembrance will always live on!

Jessica Lewis
KLeeLew@aol.com

Bio (auto)

Jessica Lewis is 16 years old and lives in East Amherst, NY. Jessica has had poems previously published in the Anthology of Poetry by Young Americans 2000 edition, and several student anthologies.

She attends Hebrew High School and will be confirmed this May. She devours books like her chocolate labrador gulps down cookies. She is an awesome photographer and looks forward to her basement darkroom being completed soon.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Jessica Lewis and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Winter, 1945

for Gerda Weissman Klein, a survivor

I remember that day so clear.
We were never called to work.
I was rebellious and furious,
But everyone did as they were told.
They forced us to strip to the bare,
And marched us down the hall.
My number, 895A, burns to the touch.
Confusion, rumors,
Circling your head.
Suppose we were to reach the gas chambers,
Or would a miracle happen?
Many girls who passed by
Left trails of blood behind them,
Blood on the snow;
It seeps into the cold dirt.
A memento, a reminder.
Now, the snow captivates my ghostly face,
Reminiscing my empty stomach.
Girls, categorized in columns on the road,
It's so unreal.
The dark war fills our heads,
With crazy ideas of suicide and torture.
Hundreds of stick-legs
Crumple to the ground.
Moaning and groaning
Are the only sounds.
Dying and crying,
Burned into the brain
Gun shots to the second
Is a daily ritual.
Do not escape,
For they will find you.
And you will not see
The wintry sunlight on the glittering snow tomorrow.
Death, written all over faces
It won't get better.
Will this ever end? Will we walk for all eternity?
Will these looming clouds ever go away?
Maybe one day,
We will be free.
My smile will breathe again,
My body restored.
My hope is still alive,
It has not deserted me yet.
I will make it through,
I will live to see a happy day.
I will show those evil Germans
My anger in taking my valuables away;
Home, family, friends, my life.
I can prove that I can live through this war,
I will survive,
For I am strong.

Anthony Liccione
lzachary7@msn.com

Bio (auto)

I have been writing poetry for 10 years. My poetry has appeared in:

Melting Trees Review, Taj Mahal Review, Foliate Oak Online, HazMat Review, Scrivener's Pen and many other publications.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Anthony Liccione and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Numbers of Ashes

The master bakers
stood by with long black
aprons and stain-charcoaled gloves
-gray despair
carrying their electric torches
and truncheon
preparing the midday luncheon
to feed the unquenchable
oven’s mouth with bread;
indigestible to tender or old.
Feeding on

from the starting line
to the back
screams (unknown)
searching, hoping for their
Redeemer.

Hunger growled in our stomachs
and thirst sweated
from off our foreheads, still
we didn’t complain to the heat
with each passing step.

“Take the gold crowns from off
their teeth and strip those jewels
from their fingers-
they are merely stupid Jews.”

Walking swine to the slaughter.

By rank, by selection, by number
D1 - 2969:
was bellowed,
it was now my brother’s time
where he sat balled in the corner;
broken ankle/shapeless ball-joint
not good for the field,
but fine for the fire.

Scott Malby
beowolf2@harborside.com

Bio (auto)

Scott is a frequent contributer to journals all over the world. His work has been featured on Poetry Super Highway, Tin Lustre Mobile, ken*again and the 2004 written journal of xconnect as well as a wide number of other places too numerous to mention. He lives along the shore of the Pacific Ocean in Coos Bay, Oregon.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Scott Malby and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

The Witness

I have learned it is unwise to save or cherish anything
~
Duane Locke

a.
They say, Homer aside, it's a young man's game. I am old, so old my bones clink
against barbed wire. My bony fingers turn the pages of our history. My knees
are sticks rubbing against each other. Denials chime through my skull, rattling
these jaws shamanizing with the wind.

Who listens anymore? Everyone shouts. The sounds I make at night are whispered
accusations. Auschwitz, Rwanda, Kigali, Bosnia. Gas chambers of the soul, starvations,
a land of humiliations where ghosts throw dice made from their teeth while flying
spinning kites made from their own flesh. You know it well. It is the land of Genocide.
Like a pale miscarriage it stalks our dreams as we sail down its rivers of blood
our own inattention and lost innocence anchoring its roots.

b.
Upheavals are a burden of debris, a decaying clump of private torments carried
on the shoulders of refugees until they fall, are crushed by the weight of their own
distress. Witness this bookless, Jewish scholar unable to read his situation, trapped
in the last days of his house of flesh with nothing to live for but poetry and the memory
of his erudition. For fifty years he lived among his books. In six days all was gone,
even the kindness of friends. Not everything can be painted with words or a brush.
There is no permanence in the things that we love. The tragedy of life is in the glory
of living it, making our lives up as we go, always starting over as time sweeps the floor
clean, even of us

c.
Consider this teenager with nothing to look forward to but a night of knives.
She clutches in her hand a little box. The box says it all. Her dowry of death.
Rose, dried violet, poppy, pansies, dust, a small clove of garlic, letters, poems,
tarnished pennies together wrapped in scraps of lace. A faded lock of hair her
lips now press against. Mind's burial ground. Hope. Still whispering. Denials.
What do we say to her?

Kelly Ann Malone
Kelly.A.Malone@kp.org

Bio (auto)

I am the mother of three active boys. I also have a wonderful husband and a full time job as a Project Analyst in a Cancer Research Department in the health care industry. I was born in Southern California in May of 1963. I still live here and I still love it. I have been writing since I was around twelve years old. Some of my poetic influences are Ogden Nash, Edna St. Vincent Millay and Dorothy Parker to name a few. My of my published credits include York University's School of Women's Studies Journal, The Library of Congress 9/11 website (completion 9/04), The Rearview Quarterly, The Penwood Review, The Wesleyan Advocate Magazine, Free-Verse Magazine, Poems Niederngasse,The Street Corner magazine, Promise Magazine, Albany University's "Offcourse Literary Journal", Temple University's "Schuylkill Creative and Critical Review", Duke University's "Voices" Journal, "The Permanente Journal," Muse Apprentice Guild Literary Magazine, and Pulsar Ligden Poetry Society to name a few.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Kelly Ann Malone and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Auschwitz Child

Gentle child, receive this cloak
Wrap warmth around your fear
Look past the sorrow, through the smoke
Until again it's clear

Look past the horror that you feel
For I'll retrieve your light
Release the heartache you conceal
Release it to the night

Your sullen eyes hold so much pain
Your hands are stained with grief
I'll gladly free you from this chain
And offer you relief

This child who is in despair
This child left to die
A life that no adult should bear
A soul for which we cry

Ascend my precious, past the stars
Where comfort waits above
Relinquish life's oppressive scars
Replace them with my love

Unite again with simple dreams
Let mother brush your hair
Gone, the anguish and the screams
Replaced, the love and care

No more outcries in the night
Or sudden, shrill alarms
Cherished peace in gleaming white
Has wrapped you in its arms

I'll place you by your fathers' side
Your siblings gather round'
Again you have a sense of pride
Your family safe and sound

Gerda Mayer
verarich@clara.co.uk

Bio (auto)

Gerda Mayer was born in Karlovy Vary, in what was then Czechoslovakia. In 1939 she was evacuated to England in what proved to be the last 'Kindertransporten' of Jewish children to leave Prague before the Nazis invaded. She lives in Chingford (north-east London).

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Gerda Mayer and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

The Emigration Game - Winter 1938/39

Mother and I walk through the streets of Prague.
Her hands are balled against the falling snow.
(Can't she afford gloves. Are they bare from choice?)
There's snow above and endless steps below.

We have a bag of chocolate-creams; we play
The Emigration Game: England, if brown;
Or, if the centre's white, we must stay here;
If yellow, it's Australia. Snow falls down. 

I pick a brown, and mother has the white.
She walks with a straight back: Let's try again.
Her legs are varicosed; her heels are raised.
She's bearing up and stout of heart. In vain

From consulate to consulate her steps
Inscribe petitions. Soon the sweets are gone.
Then March comes, and invaders bar all routes:
Yet leave no trace of her when they move on;


Their footsteps beating time and bearing down.


.....First published in The Observer.

Stephen Mead
mead815@yahoo.com

Bio (auto)

Stephen Mead is a published artist/writer living in northeastern NY. A resume and samples of his artwork can be seen in the portfolio section of Absolute Arts, and 123soho.com. Stephen also has several title pieces of e books online at www.scars.tv. These pieces incorporate both image and text.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Stephen Mead and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

He's My Fear

Fuhrer,
Husband, Lover Man
About the marrow,
These towns that my limbs make...
There's such storehouses, homes
Such depots and parks for which
I am the reservoir, street-set, in
The field his face is my sky of
Down amid the ducts,
The gun or the cyanide,
Last bunker exits...

Ashes, ashes, it is all planned,
Is larger than the gassed
Or those flares of ack ack
When my heart was surely
Its own alarm.

Love is despair, sister,
And he, the mad champion,
The conqueror, pure and trapping
As math, with his rhetoric charms.
I fell as the whole nation did,
Greedy to succeed...
His accomplishments, his failure,
Both my terror, and how, half-glutton,
Half-deer, I took part in the woods,
Blood black, the bloody slaughtering woods.

Better to end with him
And a coward's courage
Than face the world's rubble of our dreams
About our necks. Better, my fear swore,
But I see he's just a man here
And that the real god's this capsule
I swallow, unafraid now,
Yours always, Eva
Braun, I write, sister.

Susan Meehan
smeehan@tcs.wap.org

Bio (auto)

My name is Susan Bergman Meehan and I live in Washington, DC. I am primarily of Jewish and Irish background, with a little New England Yankee thrown in for spice. I'm retired officially, but very active politically in the District. I'm also a member of a citywide Emergency Response Team, which is fascinating to say nothing of prudent, as I live less than a dozen blocks from the White House. In my spare time, I do embroidery and other needlework, along with a very active online correspondence. Recently, my family came back from a vacation in France, and my French was good enough (to my surprise) to have been asked if I were French, so I intend to start going to French language gatherings here in Washington - that should be fun.

This was written about my great uncle, who, along with a dozen of his family members, was killed in a Nazi sweep. He had thought that his WWI Iron Cross would guarantee his safety. The second poem is a more general one, although fiery. The third - and my favorite - is about a photo I have of two half sisters of my grandmother, taken in the 1930s before they, too, were swept up and killed the Nazis. The words "night and fog " are deliberate references to a euphemism current in the 1940s for concenration camp deaths.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Susan Meehan and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

His Guarantor: My Great Uncle

He wore his Iron Cross proudly
and the crutch for his lost leg.
Surely, his bravery and sacrifice would be honored --
heroism in service of the Fatherland
in the last war, the Emperor’s war,
guaranteed it,
of that he was certain.
But then the boxcar door slid shut,
and the rank smell of bodies
pressing against him
pressing against his Iron Cross
soon overwhelmed the stench of cattle.
The train swung east towards
its destination
its slaughterhouse ––
his final battle.

Corey Mesler
chmesler@earthlink.net

Bio (auto)

Corey Mesler has been a book reviewer for numerous papers for over ten years and for much longer than that he has been fumbling in a greasy till, selling Philip Roth and Iris Murdoch and Richard Powers and Steve Stern to the great unwashed who come to him from fourteen surrounding counties, asking ìwhat is there to read?,î such is his reputation. He has published work in Yellow Silk, Black Dirt, Blue Unicorn and Green Egg, and thatís just the colors. His first novel, Talk, appeared in 2002, and a chapbook of poems, Chin-Chin in Eden, in 2003. He is the husband of the worldís most patient woman, and a damn fine bookseller in her own right, and the father of two children, whose talents have so far surpassed their fatherís he can only shake his hoary head and mutter.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Corey Mesler and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Hitler Never

Hitler never saw his camps
first hand.
Never saw the necrotic maw
that was his
Final Solution. And he died
in a ditch of his
own devising, burnt like a
letter to God,
never delivered, a black prayer.

Dawn O'Leary
dawnoleary@verizon.net

Bio (auto)

I'm a writer - poet, playwright, screenwriter. Mother of three. Jersey born, now living in L.A.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Dawn O'Leary and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Among the Fiction

Misplaced among the fiction,
the book should have, could have
been such, except for
photographs: a herd of women
plunging through a shudder of trees.
A clearing with naked men
before a pit and one small boy
edging toward it, about to die
curious. I had opened to a place
that is always lost, a world
that was not mine. In panic I retrieved
my birth date, vindicating myself
of ever having lived while all these died.

Jesse, friend of my son,
age nine with eager eyes
black and deep as oil under earth:
History is what I would protect you from.
Gently I would take it from your hands,
claim it to be fiction, pointing to the sign.

Ben Passikoff
benpas969@aol.com

Bio (auto)

I am a retired engineer. My poems have appeared in The Quarterly Review of Literature, the Atlanta, Harvard, Kennesaw, Sarah Lawrence and Texas Reviews, Literal Latte, Orbis, Pedestal Magazine and a truckload of other journals. My pursuits are poetry and survival. I live in Flushing, NY.

The following work is Copyright © 2004, and owned by Ben Passikoff and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Divide By Zero

Warming old distance
like serious sun, my intense
Celsius caresses decay -

my inner oleander
odoring colon, liver, bronchi,
bongo-beating blood.

Among the stars is relevance.
Here on our only spin
we rhyme our skins awhile,

and sullen snow creams
earth. We join
the white majoriy of skeletons.

Night stalks me, spreadpaws
pacing cage,
belly hanging, animal.

Copious God, your
inventory colors,
balanced by priestly

accountants, murderhanded
initialing the ovens
where Jewbodies bubbled -

savior-faced
between destructions -
your tears fall in water.

Again, your nailing eyes
pierce me to last wood,
unresurrected.

Stolen Mummies | Brendan Constantine is My Kind of Town | Up Liberty's Skirt | Feeding Holy Cats
Mowing Fargo
| I'm a Jew, Are You? | Lizard King of the Laundromat | I Am My Own Orange County
Paris: It's The Cheese
| Poetry Super Highway | Judaic Links | Rick's Bookmarks | Cobalt Poets
E-mail Rick
| Other Cool Rick Stuff / Upcoming Readings | Who The Hell Is Rick