The skin comes off first.
than random anger.
opening doors to ache.
Now, we forget to close them.
the latitude of sorrow.
walls in the kitchen.
sink with a hiss.
his prodigal teeth across my floor.
In the corner, no one can see
the shadow uncoiling, but me.
Fear is not even a word, it explains
nothing. Peace one minute, the next–
barricades fall, walls crumble.
Little is known
about moments like this.
Some think they’re drowning
in bliss, turns out to be–
The roof has given in, too.
It’s geometrically impossible
for parallel lines to cross on a page.
If the page were infinite;
if, say, we lived
on Olympus, you with your
lightning bolts, I with my herd
of cows, who knows?
You are the titan, the crow,
the impartial actor misplacing
in the folds of discarded costumes.
Characters crowd on your brow.
Your face is sometimes familiar.
The unknown is less forbidding
when the vantage point
The things we fear
become the norm.
The body learns the hidden
places between people, the open
spaces between words.
As for the mind, it’s a lonely
traveler anyway, in and out of itself
and mostly abroad.
must be the essence
Ensconced in loss,
in its cocoon of viscous flesh,
the only voice we never
want to hear,
is our own.
some things to watch out for in a poem
something big something small something
something hungry or sated something
that doesn’t know what it wants
to die to sleep perchance
to write a poem
something that grows on trees like money
but juicier something with a pit
pick it eat it break
your teeth on it
something that strokes your neck at night
not a feather not someone’s breath not even
something that clings to a wall scurries along
the ground binds your hands bursts
out of your mouth
something that stretches lingers grows
follows wherever you go
something that holds up the sky gets caught
in your teeth makes clamshells weep
something covered with moss you pull up to your chin
over your lips your eyes your naked
something that breaks into song
when you expect it the least
something that drops from the sky shatters on impact
something with a tail to nuzzle into your palm to pierce
the soft shell of your heart something
to take home
something that rolls from under your feet gathers
no moss loves glass houses something
to hold in your fist
something with roots you want to slip sleep under
climb into hug borrow its skin
something neither too big nor too small
foreign blood sânge străin
it’s all about being born altundeva
somewhere else te trezești
this place in your mind că nu exiști
that ceased to exist altundeva
the moment you left it nici
foreign words shrivel singura
on your tongue pe care-o cunoști
never truly awakened până la sânge
nu te mai știe
your accent betrays you hainele tale
the way you look gesturile
up and smile micile
too widely too soon incomodități
you’re awfully serious încolțit
you’re rather vain din păcate sunt
măști toate măști
it depends toate
on who you talk to or whom cu cine taci
you’re silent with respirând
that grin you fail to te refaci într-alt
recognize in the mirror chip
is no protection mai puțin
but feels like it sparge oglinda
sparge oglinda îți zic
blood sânge străin
thumps louder in your eardrums străin
when you hear your name până la sânge
hopelessly deformed ești
yours nonetheless sigură
it’s a baby you cannot give up că mai e al tău
for adoption acest
so you give up yours nume
and wait acest
to be loved sânge?
Originally from Chisinau, Moldova, Romana Iorga lives in Switzerland. She is the author of two poetry collections in Romanian. Her work in English has appeared or is forthcoming in EcoTheo Review, Lunch Ticket, Harpur Palate, Stoneboat, Cagibi, PANK, and others, as well as on her poetry blog at clayandbranches.com.