Speechless the Magazine

 To render. Be rendered. Awestruck. Awesome.
A magazine of poetry and related arts straight from L.A.



Sharon Coleman, Poetry Flash Assistant Editor

A French and Yiddish translator and published poet (Pressed Flowers from the Holy Land) Sharon Coleman holds an undergraduate degree in Comparative Literature from University of California, Berkeley, and both an M.A. and an M.F.A. in Poetics from New College of California. She teaches in the Peralta Community Colleges, where she teaches Creative Writing and English full-time at Vista College, and is faculty advisor to Milvia Street Magazine, Vista's national award-winning, student-edited and -produced literary journal.

                                                Sawyer Camp Trail

                                     inland, voyaging
                                                        as her water broke clearly around
                                                                             muscles dig deep into her rippling image
                                                                             looking forward, looking down

                                                                             boat’s bottom.
                                                                             sweat, shift, sway
                                                                             trails abound.
                                                                             shore side seers
                                                                             and their dogged images travel

                                                                             alongside her water parting

Papered Names

after "The Street" and "Two Ladies in the Street" by Ernst Kirchner, 1880-1939

1. Eine andere Strasse. . . der Kraftwagen axing her spine, city contracted in bent permanence the once angular springs, “See? Do you?” the other streets, away from the zigzag vitality center, here where negative space crumples into wooden tears of a backward “S”.

2. a protectorate? a wall against irreparable damage, the cripple I have become, Ich komme zum Ende, no longer protected by her stripes and starched clowning collar. We looked into each other’s eyes and stepped common in rhythm, eine andere Strasse where your eyes range sharp the violence just beyond, to the right of, the Zigeunerin dressed tight in peasantry’s scarf and dark fraternal hat. Wir kommen zum Ende, another street, bent, petrified, at the bridge.

3. A city of bridges and the madness of crossing over into colorless lives. They say I see in threes. Breaking out of sound, he removed his ear as simply as one would alter a painted or carved figure. Bridges of daubs, cuts, rolling, pressing, pressed together and asked to fight their war, I remove not the finger that would release the bullet from the metal but the entire hand, the woman I formed nude, my impassive witness. We move through bridges, we live on both sides.

4. . . . cutting deep into the wood of the country, fibers frozen from ankle to knee stepping over the river from the electric to mud, sweat, gas-burning street lamps, they live here in thought-contorting homes rotting, fallen. Yesterday’s rain still underfoot, muddled words, secret accents, cutting quick, on guard, taken, our gazes part.

5. walking blocks, we have come to the end. Fluid strokes in the city’s center and vitality sapped to exhaustion, we live on either side as time passes backward over the small wooden bridge, so broken, “where does it lead?” to be replaced . . . scarless art nouveau. . . no, not to look, imprisoned by the primitive wood of today.

6. She flames from her legs to a charcoaled face, incendiary modernity in a backward street. She doubles over, my painted love, from the daemonic to an autumnal no.

New Years Morning, 2003

snow flakes
                          tracing in white
            cross-wise wind currents
            silently fall
            upon the green bamboo
            just north of London.


Speechless Spring 2007
Copyright © 2007 Published by
Tebot Bach