Ann Arbor Review


Amit Parmessur
Elisavietta Ritchie
Donal Mahoney
Fahredin Shehu
Richard Kostelanetz
Alex Ferde
Michelle Bailat-Jones
Duane Locke
Chris Lord
Nahshon Cook
Al Ortelani
Shutta Crum
Ajibola Tolase
Silvia Scheibli
Laszlo Slomovits
Emmanuel Samson
Lyn Lifshin
Running Cub
Nikita Parik

Alan Britt
John Grey
Bhisma Upreti
Paul B. Roth
Jennifer Burd
Sunday Michael
Michael H. Brownstein
Ali Znaidi

Richard Gartee
Kanev Peycho

Engjell I. Berisha

Fred Wolven
Petraq Risto
Carolyn Elias
Alabi Oyedeji



Ann Arbor Review

is an independent

International Journal & ezine

Copyright (c) 2015 Francis Ferde
All rights revert back to each poet.
--editor / Southeastern Florida

AAR history note:  in print 1967 - 1980.  Irregular publications 1980 - 2004.  As ezine 2004 - present. Most of 47 years all together....



Francis Ferde
Silver Grey Fox
Running Cub
Fred Wolven

Submissions via e-mail:




I think of her watching the
last rose petals on a
day like today, say deep
August, browning like
an old rubber doll
she might have left
in an attic in Canada.
I think of her pressing
skin against glass, a sense
of summertime falling,
that sense of fall
that  that Sylvia Plath
wrote of. Or maybe some
freeze frame of what
is going, moving on.
I see her pale arms,
sea mist velvet jeans
hugging hips that
never will not be boyish.
In the wind, gone
voices move close
to her cheek bones. In
this frame she could be in
a fancy 30's gown. Some
thing is raw, some thing
is broken. It has to be
a full moon
etching black water.
She has to know that
from what is torn
and scarred, some
thing almost too
exquisitely beautiful
is already stirring,
some thing dark
as coal becoming
diamond, insistent,
dying to be born



Sometimes I think of her
as a wild foal, hardly
touching down in prairie
glass, Saskatewan. Or a
sea nymph, her gaze
glued to the deepest
emerald wave, a Silkie
luring men she can't stay
with long. There she
is, on a seaweed jeweled
rock, her songs, ribbons
of melancholy lassoing you,
pulling on your heart.
Some say Bessie Smith
left even or especially good
men to have something
to make her songs
burn the hottest blues. I
think of Joni knowing
what can't stay, what is so
broken it catches the
light like torn bottles
the ocean's turned
to sea glass jewels, that
what dissolves
behind you in the rear
view mirror haunts,
knife- like as her trees,
slashes of wild paint
shivering in a naked row,
such exquisite beauty
in wreckage



I wore Tea Rose and
often a black rose
in my hair that summer,
symbol of freedom,
a nod to the White Rose,
the German girl who
protesting the Nazis,
gave her skin, her lips
and heart, her life. I was
flying coast to coast
to read, coming back
to an alone house. Named
for the rose, for a aunt
adventurous as Joni,
who danced in flames,
I dressed in rose. Deborah
of the roses. The stories
about her whispered by
grown ups behind stained
glass doors. Who wouldn't
expect roses in my poems?
White rose, Bulgarian
rose. When I walked thru
airports with a white
rose from Allen Ginsberg
everyone whispered, "roses."
But it was the rose scent
perfuming the air from my
body. You could almost
hear, as even now I can
almost feel the one who
touched me on that
coast, what Joni heard
in the wind, the end
of, the chilly now,
the last face to face



the way I scrawl my name,
the petals that don't
connect to any center.
I felt like that that
summer, packing and
unpacking my head,
alone in a hotel room
drifting like milkweed
dust. Rose on my wrist
and nipples. I think of
Joni, her blonde hair, a
fan on the rocks of the
Pacific miles from where
an ex-con poet sent me
keys to a hide-away. He
might as well have
been a rock star, Joni's
rock n roll man,
the kind any blond would
flip her hair for, fall
and follow home. A man
you can't hold long or
count on. Back in my room
I played her songs
over and over as moths
brushed the August
screens and berries
glistened. It was so still,
so much seemed too
good to waste and
I wasn't even blonde
to the bone yet



When I see hers
sprawled across the album,
explosive brush strokes,
guava, blood and green,
her wild petals not
connected to any
stem. I can't help but
feel those slashes
of light in your poems,
how sometimes it seems
your words could be mine.
I've heard those lost
lovers in the wind. Maybe
I heard then last night
when I couldn't
sleep. I think of the
photograph of you with
a rose in your hair. You
could be my sister those
nights when I am the
rose I was named
for, Raisel Devora.
And why wouldn't some
one pierced by words,
turn addict for a
sense rare as Tea Rose
or Rashimi rose incense.
Those lovers, like
applause: I found them
addictive too. I think of you
criss-crossing the country,
a cigarette dangling,
leather and suede,
tawny earth colors
(you could find in my
closet), eyes few would ever
be as blue as. Aching for
something you can't
still hold and knowing
from that raw wound, pain
and piercing beauty explodes



"raw and direct, what in
her life is really happening."
I read this of a new young
star. Someone says she
makes you feel like she's
your best friend, that she's
gone thru hell and come
out as a beauty, her
losses honed into words
that touch you. Of course
she reminds me of Joni
pulling from the pain
of those men who called
her from the harbor,
kissed her with their
freedom,  what
shimmers like light
thru stained glass. How
she transforms the
blackness, holes in the
air, the ache. I think
of her making jewels
from those who
climbed mountains,
calling out her name,
leaving their stain,
of her stalking images
of dreams flying with sea
gulls and sand castles,
worlds they can't share.
Sand castles crumble.
From what isn't said
she spins magic,
words that hold you,
will be enough to
keep you as long as
you long to



sometimes what stays
is the odd way one
said "Albany." Or
another's print on the
wall no paint hides.
You hear "honey"
in the wind. So few
called me that 
many years. As in
her song, that
sound, like applause,
face to face. Tristes
and joy. I can feel
her feeling it. Some
times what stays
is the fog the
day after, a voice
on the radio like
skin, days when her
words were like
lips on the air. No
more shiny hot nights
of rose petals,  but
that touch that will
stay, last if it has to, as
long as your
heart beats



when I go back and
look at these poems,
its as if Joni
dabbled in them.
A little jazz, a
blues riff. I think
of the woman on
the metro, sobbing.
I think of rain.
I think of roses.
Of blues my baby
left me. I think
of Joni's woman
with her Tarot cards
and tears, of all
things that did not,
could not happen,
more haunting than
so much that did



one song where the
blues are mixed
with sun and if you
painted this poem
it would be green,
mellow. After a
litany of men she
loved but never
trusted with their
shy lover eyes, their
big bad bedroom
eyes. Now she's a
lucky girl, a sunny girl
a no longer treated
like a toy girl but
a truly lucky
girl whose lover
makes night
crawling disappear



Lyn Lifshin, Vienna, Virginia
                     Niskayuna, New York


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