Ann Arbor Review

INSIDE THIS ISSUE:

Silvia Scheibli
'Deji W. Adesoye
Chris Lord
Ali Znaidi
Paul B. Roth
Umm-e-Aiman Vejlani
Lyn Lifshin
Laszlo Slomovits
Naim Kelmendi
Richard Kostelanetz
Anton Gojcaj
Duane Locke
Jennifer Burd
David Ishaya Osu
Steve Barfield
Miguel A Bernao Burrieza
Richard Gartee
Violeta Allmuca
Alan Britt

Fred Wolven
Ilire Zajmi
Running Cub
Donal Mahoney
Fahredin Shehu
Peter Tase
Nahshon Cook
Al Ortolani
Alex Ferde
Anton Frost

Michelle Bailat-Jones
Lazlo Slomovits & Jennifer Burd

Karyn M. Bruce
A. J. Huffman
Michael D. Long



 



Ann Arbor Review

is an independent

International Journal & ezine

Copyright (c) 2014 Francis Ferde
All rights revert back to each poet.
--editor / Southeastern Florida
------------------------------------------------

staff:
Francis Ferde
Silver Grey Fox
Running Cub
Fred Wolven



 

Submissions via e-mail:

poetfred@att.net

 

 

REMAINS
         
(For my maternal grandfather, Gersten Samuel)

Nearly sixty years after leaving, I return
a stranger to the land where I was born
and visit for the first time a neglected part
of the Jewish cemetery in Budapest.

The caretaker finds my grandfather's grave |
with difficulty, the stone askew and sinking,
the name hardly readable, the dates erased,
as if hed not lived in time but another dimension.

The grass is high, and from a nearby maple,
seedlings not thinned for years, choke the rows
between the stones. Here lie the remains
of a man I never met, my mother's father,

who could hear a melody once, and play it back
faultlessly on piano. He died when my mother
was twelve. When I left home at eighteen,
I knew she wasnt crying just over me

shed never gotten past his leaving.
At mealtimes hed quip to the grandmother
I also never met, No need to change
the plates for every course, Karolina

its all going to the same place. Yes, Grandpa,
it and we, all going to the same place. And thank
you, because now tunes are finding new instruments
my ears, lips, breath, and fingers to come through.

I step back, and the grave is gone in the growth.
The caretaker offers to clean the stone, gild letters,
restore dates, maintain the site for a price,
of course. Arent all Americans rich?

I take a photo, a hand-hold for memory to climb
back up, and leave the grave to the embrace
of what grows for the earth belongs to roots.
The living can keep a burial ground only

for so long. And then its memory singing
in younger bones memory so at home
in song. And how we find and hold our place
on earth. And the grass grows, and the trees.



REMEMBERING

The Nazi said to him, Hey Jew,
which hand do you use to wipe your ass?

My father looked at him carefully,
hooding his eyes to hide his hatred.

The Nazi shoved him with his rifle butt.
Hey, Jew, I asked you a question.

My father got up slowly, looked down,
and said, With my right hand, sir.

The Nazi sneered, I use toilet paper!
and howled at his own cleverness.

My father told this story many times,
each time asking, Have I told you this?

He lived to be 95 and told it again
just a few months before he died.

How long did the Nazi live?
What did he remember?

And what stories did he tell?



JANUARY 3rd

When I was young, some years that was 
the day we had to go back to school. 

And there was no way I could convince
my mother that being it was my birthday

I should get to stay home. She said life
was a school and Id started learning 

from my first breath. And when I 
pointed out that Id had no practice, 

no teacher for that, she just said,
get your shoes on, its time to go.

Now that its much later, I wonder 
if death is another kind of school 

Ill enter with no practice, no teacher.
Some day or night thats scheduled 

on a calendar hidden from breathing
Ill gradually or very suddenly be told, 

take your shoes off, its time to go. Or
perhaps that time is supple and improvised 

like a Coltrane solo where not the breath
not the body not the horn know where 

the music was or where its going 
only where it is and its not talking.

 

 

Laszlo Slomovits, Ann Arbor, Michigan

 

   


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