Author: Christine Elizabeth Murray

“Bookmarking The Oasis” and other poems by K. Srilata

Things I didn’t know I loved (after Nazim Hikmet) I didn’t know I loved windows so much but I do – enough to wrestle someone to the ground over them, so light can, once again, flood my eyes. I didn’t know I loved bare feet so much, or walking away on them to wherever point, my heart slung over my shoulder like a sheep-skin bag. I didn’t know I loved small islands of quiet in the middle of the day, but I do – they feel like old friends. I didn’t know I loved the idea of night descending like a tired bird or birds flying in and out of rooms and poems but I do. I didn’t know I loved so many things. Only now that I have read Hikmet, am I setting them free, one by one. from Bookmarking the Oasis(Poetrywala, 2015) Looking for Light, Sunbirds I wish I could show you, when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being. (Hafiz of Shiraz) Looking for light, sunbirds …

“Iago’s Curse” and other poems by Liza McAlister Williams

September Tenth, 2001   Outside the store, at the sidewalk sale, the breeze lifts each dress again as the shop girl tries to smoothen them: musses the chic brown challis pleats, ruffles the flamestitch voile whose turquoise and chartreuse V’s seem borrowed from another day. Sun, when it shines on this scene, is playful, peeping between steely clouds whose sky business does not admit playfulness. The baking, lazy summer’s over – the long summer when the towers that are about to fall amidst us in ruins have so far felt and withstood only the earliest tremors of their collapse.   Serenade (after Kevin Young) Rain popping on the air conditioner like hail on a tin roof like a handful of pebbles against a window like the pinging of a car engine cooling off – you can make a story to explain being alone again on a drenching night: a hobo curled in the hay of another anonymous barn a virgin with cold feet ignoring the signal to elope a travelling salesman out of gas in …

Alexander Cigale’s translation of Anna Akhmatova’s “Requiem”on Project Muse

  Alexander Cigale has retranslated Anna Akhmatova’s “Requiem” for Project Muse. I have been following the translation process for a while and I thought to add links here for readers of Akhmatova, including Cigale’s translations of Anna Akhmatova’s Minatures and a link to “Epilogue” from Requiem, Via Moving Poems   This isn’t me, someone else suffers. I couldn’t survive that. And what happened, May it be covered in coarse black cloth, Let them carry away the streetlights … Night. from Prologue (Requiem) by Anna Akhmatova translated by Alexander Cigale   Anna Andreyevna Gorenko better known by the pen name Anna Akhmatova was a Russian modernist poet, one of the most acclaimed writers in the Russian canon.   Akhmatova’s work ranges from short lyric poems to intricately structured cycles, such as Requiem (1935–40), her tragic masterpiece about the Stalinist terror. Her style, characterised by its economy and emotional restraint, was strikingly original and distinctive to her contemporaries. The strong and clear leading female voice struck a new chord in Russian poetry. Her writing can be said …

“Nurture” and other poems by Liz Quirke

Nurture   In the nine months I didn’t nourish you, I made notes, I studied the seasons for ingredients to encourage your growth. Scraps of paper, post-its hidden in case anyone would view my thoughts, pity my trivia of leaves and berries.   A mom yet not a mother, a woman yet not a woman. My preparation took place in private, not in maternity wards or hospital corridors, but in the hallways of my mind where I could put up pictures, time lines, fill cork boards with plans.   As the folic acid built your brain stem I collated ideas to stimulate it further, mapped journeys for us, paths we could walk together, a staggered relay to start when your other mother passed your tiny form to me.   And I could see myself holding your hand, using my limbs to scaffold the structure your mother put so beautifully in place. I am your mom without the biology of mothering. All I have for you is my heart, my brain, my lists of things, all …

“While girls my age were toddling in heels” and other poems by Ruth Elwood

There’s no place like…   In the life God never bestowed my home would be more than a crate residing on the side of the road it’s with you and her puppy, running for treats not you judging me alone on the concrete.   An age has passed; left broken by your mum you look at me now, drunken scum never knowing I could have been your father.   Your first hero taught you to read, write push you on the swing   but she didn’t want me or the ring.   While girls my age were toddling in heels   My mind drifting elsewhere – like on saving for my own set of wheels scanning milk and jam by day, it was the nights that sent cash my way. promo and waitress for “Al’s Betting Joint” “Come to Al’s bring your pals” or “ Would you like some ice?” “interested in rolling the dice?”   Shop money simple stable, Al ‘s nightly, radical all under the table.   A moral battle in my mind, …