Monday 8 March 2021

Three Poems by Antonia Alexandra Klimenko

 



Serious Moonlight

 

 

Every night 

I tell the story 

Every night  

I take my place among the stars 

among the quiet multitude 

that has glimpsed entire civilizations 

on the surface of her smile 

Every night 

I am possessed by the mystery-- 

how she drives her silver chariot  

across the dark cloud of my mind--  

how you drive me   too   a little crazy 

 

Crazy  

with your convenient omissions   

why you disappeared in broad daylight   the night before 

why the story that really matters 

is always the part you will leave out 

Crazy 

with your pale   your obscure half-truths-- 

your    knowing full well  

you could never fully love me 

 

Already I begin to sleepwalk 

through your excuses 

through your demands 

through your every expectation interpretation interrogation 

to howl at the emptiness that raves between us 

to commit unspeakable acts of lunacy 

all under the magnetic gaze 

of your less than full comprehension 

 

Soon 

who knows? 

I may be driven to suicide! 

The moon made me do it   I’ll say 

or why else would I marry a werewolf? 

 

At my own trial    of course 

I will campaign for a lighter sentence 

on grounds of insanity 

Name you   as an accomplice-- 

you   now eclipsed by my absence 

 

In light of a full confession                                               

during fertile lunar cycles  

they will attempt to restrain me   

in some prehistoric cell-- 

I                                                                                    

(the part of the story they leave out) 

just some silly female                                           

I   some inconvenient bra-burning witch-- 

some middle-age radical  

who obviously hates men 

who dares to defy them   defy you   defy gravity 

 

I   Eternal Moon    

who will rise to your every occasion                

who will conceive these words    born of light 

as light enters me    as I enter darkness   

 

Afterwards 

they will try to tell you  

they will try to tell you 

Feminism   too   is a myth 

is but a moon-induced state 

Just her fertile imagination   you will say 

just another phase   she was going through 

 

Afterwards  

you will    no doubt    

obsess over this 

for centuries 

in spite of yourself 

in spite of yourself 

Afterwards 

you will   perhaps      

name  

a small crater after me 

 

 

narcissus

 

 

i am the memory

who thinks of you

when i am gone

 

infinite heavens

melt in my mouth

un-whispering your name

 

the being sun and becoming moon

cannot eclipse the shadow

of even your slightest inflection

nor deafening darkness

                                     still

the crystal waterfall of your silence

 

breath floats on the blind amnesias

of a thousand unsilvering mirrors

whose liquid tongues worship

at the altar of your ceaseless moaning

 

i am the memory

who thinks of you

when i am gone

 

at the end of every stanza awaits

that one brief shining echo

to transport these—your dying words

to their living graves

 

 

Stardust 

                                             

 

Traveling through time was easy…the year  

I polished the moon and shined the stars 

  

and traced my name on glass 

that might break    but never open 

  

You nailed our windows shut–-mute with your loss 

And I   like the doll you once sealed in cellophane 

  

still reach back from the fading photograph 

you now hold in a more quickly fading hand 

  

Today   I will light new candles 

Old meteors will fall through the sky 

  

 and catch in my throat    invisibly 

 the way the dream died when I was twelve 

  

 My torn smile cannot retrace its own face 

 nor replace yours    then   or now 

  

 Perhaps   what I remember best– 

 is that we remember best…by moving on 

 

 

 



Antonia Alexandra Klimenko was first introduced on the BBC and to the literary world by the legendary James Meary Tambimuttu of Poetry London–-publisher of T.S. Eliot, Dylan Thoma, Henry Miller and Bob Dylan, to name a few.  his death, it was his friend, the late great Kathleen Raine, who took an interest in her writing and encouraged her to publish.  A former San Francisco Poetry Slam Champion, she is widely published. Her work has appeared in (among others) XXI Century World Literature (in which she represents France) and Maintenant : Journal of Contemporary Dada Writing and Art archived at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. and New York’s Museum of Modern Art. She is the recipient of two grants: one from Poets in Need, of which Michael (100 Thousand Poets for Change) Rothenberg is a co-founder; the second—the 2018 Generosity Award bestowed on her by Kathleen Spivack and Joseph Murray for her outstanding service to international writers through SpokenWord Paris where she is Writer/ Poet in Residence. 

 



2 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing your inspiration. Absolutely beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  2. So enjoyable, the way the words travel in the thought process in Serious Moonlight. I particularly liked Stardust and the poignant voice and imagery of stars but of course all these poems are wonderful.

    ReplyDelete

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