Editor's note: these poems originally appeared in the first Luna Luna. We've recently received word that they've been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, so we're republishing them here. Warmest congratulations to LL editor Fox Frazier-Foley!
The Raven-Haired Seer Dreams of a Girl Her Age, Abducted from a Nearby Road, and Keeps Such Incidents to Herself Until She Begins to Dream Instead of the Abducted Girl’s Murderer
If forty-seven locusts in my mouth I could
not talk her hair in wind like mine
If water tastes of blood we need more
water she laughed she never
looked right at me
If we are the water and the locusts
let us pray how could this how could I
If we are wretched wrested deep
in prayer let us I dreamed
his glasses mustache dreamed
they found him dreamed forty days
of darkness would begin if I said his name out loud They did
find him, my father said, last night while
you slept If boils burn our eyelids covered
his mouth, kept If rivers rise & loose our city
walls If God cannot bring Himself to keep
his eyes on the grey our children safe from this
being taken this
grey expanse before us.
Peter was one of four Catholic Workers in Upstate NY Who Spilled His Blood at a Military Recruitment Center in Protest of the USA’s Invasion of Iraq, and Was Subsequently Arrested and Imprisoned
strangle makes a minute
is the war
These are waterless springs and mists driven by storm. The greatest darkness has been reserved for them.
soldier’s skull halved like melon & filled by time with rainwater
I could drink it I’m a razor blade
now no aphagia emulous
The dog laps its own vomit. The sow is bathed only to wallow again in mud. The earth was first formed in
water; the world of that time was deluged with water and perished. The present world and heavens have
been reserved for fire. They shall be kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the godless.
It is Roanoke.
Gretchen Foggerty, Mother of the Raven Haired-Seer’s Friends Philomena and Amelia, Was Arrested for Harassing Father Roderick, Parish Priest, Who Would Years Later Be Arrested on Multiple Charges of Pedophilia and Excommunicated
she thrashed she undressed
his rectory room, shirt
by shirt shoe by shoe
This belt, my girls, keeps me chaste.
Sometimes I do feel the urge. I admit
Your beautiful faces. Examine
your conscience. The truth: What
have you wanted –
she flailed, she assaulted
homily service pews she threw
her body facedown in the aisle
he strips them in school,
she sang, dancing backwards.
Who regarded us? Rapt
captives of pulpit.
Opiated. Apt. Exalted
He said suffer them unto me he said I tell you: sow a thought,
reap an action
by fountain & silence whose festering kindness
Who bled & who learned
of alchemy’s black: the sore, the burn,
that Wound plunging deep in the side
rendered whole as stained glass: bright slivers
of feather, of water, of fern
(the bullet implied)
sow an action, reap a habit
whose core cracked
sow a habit, reap a destiny
& brittle as the breast-
bone of a bittern.
The Fox-Haired Girl Visits A Spiritualist Medium in Upstate New York, and Sees One of Her Past Lives
Who was I to tamper or beg
the swannish fate of Leda? I took
the sieve, watered it, walked across
Rome with it full. It was true,
I had begun to feel my womb
hollow for a daughter. But I
would not suffer her to be buried
with me, our lungs learning dirt.
At times I turn to find the children
whose voices I have heard are
simply certain tones of wind.
The irrefutable tremor of my own
hand delivering these sacred tongues
their unborn calf, milky & still. Who
am I, now, to imagine moments
of convulsion against downy breast, or
the cleaved immortality that comes
after? And so, beloved,
I take you, he said, and meant I was
perfect, in my seven year-old body: chosen
to tend flame for you, Mother of our
hearth, who know me best – abject
in all but my appetites, smothering
under desire like smoke or wings. I stare
into the gibbous reds and yellows
as they eradicate each other, silent
save the occasional whisper, I am.
Fox Frazier-Foley is author of two prize-winning poetry collections, Exodus in X Minor (Sundress Publications, 2014) and The Hydromantic Histories (Bright Hill Press, 2015). She is currently editing two anthologies, Political Punch (Sundress Publications, 2016) and Among Margins (Ricochet Editions, 2016).