Landscape

Photograph ©John Stadnicki

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another midnight storm washes away the cold poetry
born at the top floor.
I balance my whole weight
on long words;
frozen stones on my tongue.

I count the mistakes god has done with me,
just to pass the time.

The violent rain hid a blind dog
inside my very bone.
Here, upstairs, both of us in the same body,
awake and hungry,
listen.

 

©Maria Stadnicka, MMXVII

published in ‘Stride’ magazine, available here

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Measurements

 

Photograph: ©John Stadnicki, Calais, August 2017

In Calais. Two years have passed since my visit to the ‘Jungle’ camp. Now demolished. Without migrants. And I get to measure time in a different way. Not as a linear construct or development or progress. In such matters, ‘time’ is not an objective concept. Time is measured in memories, stories which have been told and then forgotten, wasted. In Western political terminology, time is the dissociation from tragedy combined with the hopeless expectation of a historic healing. It is anonymous, evanescent. And so are thousands, millions across Europe and beyond.

Photograph: ©John Stadnicki, Calais, August 2017

Politics of Engagement / tearsinthefence poetry festival / 15th – 17th September 2017

Just under four weeks left. Politics of Engagement promises to enchant and to challenge you. This year’s Festival weekend will be from Friday, 15th September 2017 to Sunday, 17th September at The White Horse and Village Hall, Stourpaine.

The Festival’s theme is the politics of engagement. We shall be recalling and discussing the impact of Barry MacSweeney and Irina Ratushinskaya, both of whom read twice at our Festivals in the 1990s. At this time of extreme global political upheaval, our Festival aims to explore the lived experience of repression, austerity measures, migration, censorship and radical poetry.

Amongst the confirmed participants, so far, are Melisande Fitzsimons, Clive Gresswell, Sophie Herxheimer, Ric Hool, Norman Jope, Zibahoo Karbassi, Camilla Nelson, Kate Noakes, Luke Roberts, Steve Spence, Maria Stadnicka.

Open Readings featuring Valerie Bridge, Lesley Burt, Stephen Daniels, Richard Foreman, Gerald Killingworth, Peter King, Aidan Semmens, Charles Wilkinson.

For further information and tickets please access the link https://tearsinthefence.com/festival/.

I hope to see you there.

Thank you!

Habitatum

Photograph: ©John Stadnicki

I bring white little stones from the market

and place them, like pills, in long straight lines on my desk.

 

Although full of stuff, my body lives at the top floor –

with a view towards a perfect car park.

 

I watch the beheadings through a narrow hole in the sky

and

I point a fully-loaded gun against the world.

 

The earth rests

suspended between wild heavens and landscaped gardens.

 

And yet the sun is still rising above the silent bell ropes,

hanging loose among people who stand up to

look at the death pit as if

nothing has happened.

 

©Maria Stadnicka

 

First published in Your One Phone Call, Wales, available here

(August, MMXVII)

Persistent Ink

Photograph: ©Andrew Keenan / http://www.andrewkeenanphotography.com

 

I live in a round house across the road

and every day I wave the invisible white flag

just to distract you from writing so many letters.

 

Other times, all I do is stare at your reflected image,

bent over the desk,

thinking whether your back is broken,

having to bear so many words.

 

You do not lift your eyes up,

never see anything but yourself.

The only time you stand up and walk to the door

is to refill the glass with sand.

 

You do not receive news from the outside world

you do not know we live in times of peace now.

 

©Maria Stadnicka 2017

Photograph: ©Andrew Keenan

For more information about Andrew Keenan’s work, check https://www.andrewkeenanphotography.com/

Stand out

Someone has to. It is easy to follow along. It can feel strange to do or say something different. But without that unease, there is no freedom.‘ (Snyder T. ‘On Tyranny, 2017 )

Photograph ©Harry Oliver / Instagram @harryowns