Wednesday 11 May 2022

Two Poems by Alec Solomita


Holy Days


Your fourth anniversary

came last week two days

after a supposedly significant

anniversary of my own, i.e,

three score and ten.

By a coincidence that many

table tappers would call significant,

my special day came on Good Friday

and yours on Easter.

And my shrink, she worried,

that this week would be

for me, as dismal as that first Friday

was for Giotto’s Mary,

on her knees, embracing

the foot of the cross.

And, too, she worried (Mireya, my shrink)

that the effervescence of Easter

would exaggerate the flatness

of my sadness.


Some thought it weird

when for memory’s sake I

booked a room in the hotel

I’d frequented in your last weeks

so I could be only ten minutes

from the Home.


So, there I was sitting on the enormous

bed propped up by robust hotel pillows,

just as I was when hospice called and told me

only an hour or so to go. But this Sunday, nobody

called, which, though no surprise,

delivered a surprising jolt of grief.

Why I Drink


Precisely one cloud settles over my eyes

in the morning and man alive!

it’s full of thunder and it’s large

and dark with moisture till I’ve lain

in my rumply sheets for hours and started to sing

“Can I get a witness?”


By noon it begins to break up into

streaks of cirrus see-through rags

(And the hours are like days;

the hours are like days

not hours)


Around noon I roll off my covers

and slide barefoot onto the nubby carpet,

as the cloud shreds into tatters

of white and grey. That’s when I think about

doing the dishes, but I don’t, although

thinking about it is restful even when

the cloud puffs up as if in disapproval.


“Man alive!” my dad would say

when he was alive and needed an exclamation.

He also used to say, “Do these few dishes,”

which is still, thirty years gone by, a family joke.

“Few” being the punchline.


In the early afternoon, the cloud lifts

and the world is see-through blue,

but as the day ebbs into evening,

it expands once more,

fat and dark and still.


Alec Solomita is a writer and artist working in the Boston (USA) area. His fiction has appeared in the Southwest Review, The Mississippi Review, Southword Journal, and Peacock, among other publications. He was shortlisted by the Bridport Prize and Southword Journal. His poetry has appeared in Poetica, Lothlorien Poetry Journal, Litbreak, Driftwood Press, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Galway Review, The Lake, and elsewhere, including several anthologies. His photographs and drawings can be found in Convivium, Fatal Flaw, Young Ravens Review, Tell-Tale Inklings, and other publications. He took the cover photo and designed the cover of his poetry chapbook, “Do Not Forsake Me,” which was published in 2017. His full-length poetry book, “Hard To Be a Hero,” was just released by Kelsay Books.


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