Holy Bread

Montage: ©Claire Palmer, published in International Times, 26th July 2017

The hunger was the woman with a friendly, foreign name-tag.

That busy Saturday.

 

A miracle healer, as pale as milk, passed through the city –

a reminder that we all had our role to play in the war.

 

For a moment, his voice stopped the curious shoppingbagscrowd-

echo between tall cement buildings.

 

A sudden rain followed, baptised my sleeping bag,

in the queue at the Lower Street Food Bank.

 

The history sliced a nearby road in tiny squares of holy bread.

 

– published in International Times, available here

Economy, this morning live at ‘I am not a silent poet’

(for Timothy Snyder)

 

At first, we reduced the water supply.

The poisoned city wells dried up.

The light burnt the crops.

 

At sunset, everything crumbled into a black peace.

 

Then somehow we got used to an economy of words.

We collected ideas and thoughts in one book.

We spent the days memorising chapters.

 

For those trapped in the outer world,

for the privilege of staying alive.

 

Photograph: @John Stadnicki, MMXVII

Published today in ‘I am not a silent poet’ https://iamnotasilentpoet.wordpress.com/2017/07/12/economy-by-maria-stadnicka/

with many thanks to the editor Reuben Woolley.

The Chess Game / Jocul de Sah / LitArt

 

Pentru cititorii in limba romana, saptamana aceasta a sosit cu o surpriza minunata. O pagina de poezie publicata in LitArt publicatie lunara de cultura, tiparita la Tg. Mures, sub egida onorifica a filialei locale a Uniunii Scriitorilor.

Multumiri redactorului-sef Adrian Armand Giurgea si echipei redactionale pentru promovarea valorilor culturale romanesti.

Pentru mine are o semnificatie speciala. 14 ani de cand am publicat ultima oara in Romania. 14 ani lungi, foarte lungi, de absenta si de dor. Editia tiparita este distribuita in Romania si poate fi accesata electronic in format pdf aici:

http://www.litart.ro/fileadmin/template/pdf/litart_iunie_iulie_2017.pdf

 

 

For Romanian readers, this week arrives with a beautiful surprise. Nine poems published in LitArt, Tg. Mures, Romania, under the Romanian Writers Association patronage. Gracious thanks to the editor-in-chief Adrian Armand Giurgea as well as the whole editorial team for the great work you are doing in promoting the cultural values of our generation, in Romania and abroad.

This has a particular significance for me, as it marks 14 years since the publication of my last poem written in Romanian. 14 long years.

The magazine is available in print and online, downloadable here:

http://www.litart.ro/fileadmin/template/pdf/litart_iunie_iulie_2017.pdf

Photograph: @Georgiana Calinescu-Barber

Rituals

Sometimes when both of us have dinner

the silent wolf stops by to watch.

I hear the urgent knock on the window but

keep looking forward, keep laughing.

 

We talk about the constant rain and

listen to the tapping sound on the roof.

I offer you another glass.

A distant howl breaks in – metallic echo in the room.

 

The ocean drips and drips

cold over the plates, cold over the tablecloth.

I wipe everything clean.

The milk teeth are ready to crush new words.

Photograph: @John Stadnicki, MMXVII

An Absolute Silence

There is so much poetry in the house
that nothing ever gets done anymore.
I simply watch this room with scribbles all over it:
the shiny floors reflect the open sky
the music has stopped
the dust has settled on all our books.

It is like snow to me but you
stand up soldier when talking and
ask that I go to bed early and
switch the lights off.

The war does not scare me any longer
just the fact that I am
of no consequence to you.
The only way I can speak now
is by keeping an absolute silence.

Poem published today in ‘Stride’ magazine.

http://stridemagazine.blogspot.co.uk/2017/07/so-much-poetry.html?view=flipcard

Photograph: @John Stadnicki

Miss Susan Warlord Ibrahim

Photograph: @Maria Stadnicka

For many years, I had received no letters, no news. I had my tea at six, I went to bed at ten. I had good dreams, lined with bleached fabric, well-ironed. Stark. I had a dog, I had a cat and that was all. But it was Susan who called me ‘dearest’ in a long-winded email, sent from her West African google account. Susan whose father had recently died. On Thursday 28th April 2011. In a fight with the Republican Forces of Ivory Coast. She admitted she had found me through the internet and that I would see the whole thing as a pleasant surprise. She wore blue, she said, and came to me with a business proposition. As she was looking for a long-term relationship and for investment assistance, Susan promised me a hefty fifty percent. If only I said ‘yes’, if only I agreed to kiss her back with my account, to help her find a way around a hundred million. Miss Susan Warlord Ibrahim at gmail dot com. She loved me. She did. Every day for a month, at half past seven, her love arrived in my spam box. I thought to write her back and call it off; or just to ask if she had considered pet allergies. And send her a detailed review which looked at the recent increase in reported cases of British dermatitis. But Mondays and Tuesdays, between eight and nine, I work to correct the grammar errors in my final draft. One hundred and twenty pages so far. And still writing.

 

The Return of the ‘Smallminded Books’

Smallminded Books is a beautiful project created by Rupert Loydell in collaboration with poets across the country and explores the concept of poetry as a gift token. It is about publishing small, very small books, in limited edition. As small as my palm, as big as my heart. Little books which are free and can be kept in your wallet, in your pocket, in …your other books. But mostly, they need to be read.

This new collection contains seven small books: Unspoken by Clark Allison, really there by John Martone, Fresh Roses by Sheila E. Murphy, ‘my name means the shape I am’ by Patricia Farrell, An enjoyable night was had by all by Mischa Foster Poole, Prayerbook for Trees by Anna Cathenka and EXITUS by Maria Stadnicka.

The books have been edited and designed by the poet and artist Rupert M. Loydell and published by Smallminded Books.

I salute this brilliant initiative with great joy and excitement and I am offering ten free copies of EXITUS, as a gift, to celebrate our beautiful language. To celebrate this project, the imagination, the playfulness and the creative energy which comes with poetry.

If you would like your free copy, please email me at mariastadnicka@yahoo.co.uk.