Wednesday 24 March 2021

Four Poems by Anabell Donovan



Aldo could talk streams
of non-sense to neutralize
red faced anger or work around
the most absurd forms of bureaucracy.

When unexpected, he'd ask a question
to halt any heated exchange,
"Do you know how the opera lady
hits those high notes?"


"I'll let you think about it."

And he'd calmly reassure whoever,
"Tomorrow, I'll get back
to you tomorrow."
as he handed a card with a number.

Then one of his uncles
would quietly resolve
the situation.

A sharp dresser
with wide shoulders
and a jaunty stride,
when in lack of a date,
made any girl look fine
on his contoured arm.

Even drunk, he could tango
like a cat burglar
evading the police,
and I was a willing whip
in his knowing hand.

He brought a bouquet of roses
and I swooned.
Then days later I found out
he'd charged them
to my mother's account.

I asked him about the charges
and he bargained with a profusion
of compliments and explanations,
and I was both confused and blushing.

He handed me a joint
and made a quick exit.

"Tomorrow, I'll get back
to you tomorrow."
as he got in his car.

He went to Mexico as a diplomat
with a suitcase full of drugs.
"No one opened it,"
he'd say with a shrug and a laugh.

Then he was sent to Cuba,
surely the austere revolution
would straighten him out.

Yet he returned a ghost,
who'd drop by
haunted and unannounced.
He tried humour, a reminder
of a flour stained face
with patched clothes
and worn out shoes
under a faded circus tent.

He shook and shivered
as he laboured to speak,
his words slow in coming,
"Can I borrow some money?"

"I don't have any.
Are you going to the doctor?
Can I drive you?"

"Tomorrow, I'll get back
to you tomorrow." he said
with a quick hug and kisses
on both cheeks.

I never saw him again.
I heard he passed away
from delirium tremens.

When I asked
what happened,
one of his uncles replied
"What a waste, what a waste."  

I lost my smile,
it fell somewhere
in the crevices
of a hermit's dwelling
between sackcloth and ashes.


Tabula Scalata

Furtive images distract
and draw to the undertow,
unless you're moving,
all and nothing is relative.

I glance up, and she glances back,
en face, inky, clarion voiced Fury
poised to rush the ranks,
hair dishevelled, arms tattooed
and waving brands.

Her dark eyes follow me,
and what I see is not there anymore,
what she sees is what you see
when you catch yourself unawares.

A flower laden woman peers
through an orange haze,
bonfires and ancient oak groves
tangled in her tawny hair.

She smiles with a woman's knowing,
the shared womb
from whence stirrings bloom.

I rearrange myself into what is,
a harsh fall into determined lines,
turn around and walk back.

Behind her, shadows sprout
through the earth  
and in a circle create an altar
from which the Fury comes forth.

A bird sips tears
from a corner of the sky.



Friend Request / Arcane Saint

Is that him?

I wondered at the

profile pic.

Respectable economist

in a tucked dress shirt,

leather belt

and short hair.

That's not

my Raphaelite saint


wild eyed

lightning rod

wiry Arecibo man

Tishbite desert wanderer

with long soft curls

ankh necklace

bell bottoms and sandals.

The loose stone

caressing, scraping

the mountainside


on the edges of world

world's sharp edges

ashes of the end

piling on his hair.


he pulsated, churned

distorted, morphed


House of mirrors

dance of the body music.

He disturbed me

shook me

made me

wordless seer

after he lost

his two front teeth

in a fight over me.

I loved him.

I don't know

who this friend request

is from

the name is the same

but where is the

arcane saint?

Maybe he snuck out with young me,

burning rubber in a Celica

without working brakes

breaking into bell towers

leaning on porous stones

smoking pot, drinking rum

and walking wake-trails

on the waters with Machado.



You taste of the first time I ate
early morning bread
from a brick oven
my great grandfather brought
brick by brick
from La Coruña, Spain.

The first time tantalized
by a brisk and subtle
Arabesque of spices
in the Algarve's open air markets,
startling and surprising
in all forms delicate and fiery.

You taste like the first
pure orange orb I greedily
snatched from the tree
to ravenously quench
the deepest thirst
from playing baseball
in the baked dirt
of mid day.

And you taste of the first
and last wonder
in the deep mystery of night,
all the halves
that makes the whole.

Anabell Donovan (Anna Eusthacia) is a psychologist and educator dedicated to student success. She wants to “start where language ends.”



  1. All the four poems focus the time and mankind in a universal tone. I am really pleased with the inner taste of these fabulous verses. Best regards
    Saiful Sirnwel
    From Bangladesh

  2. Well inked verses depicting the human race in contrast of nature. Simultaneously the poet is vigorous enough to have a universal appeal in her poems.
    With best regard
    Saiful Sirnwel
    From Bangladesh

  3. Well inked verses depicting the human race in contrast of nature. Simultaneously the poet is vigorous enough to have a universal appeal in her poems.
    With best regard
    Saiful Sirnwel
    From Bangladesh

  4. Four fantastic pieces, some of it narrative, some of it completely surrealistic, symbolistic as well! So well done and above all the rest out there!


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