FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Three Poems by Silva Zanoyan Merjanian

Tonight
by SILVA ZANOYAN MERJANIAN

Tonight a thousand eyelids will close on beautiful lies
and quivering lips will sleep unkissed
untouched by sultry blue jazz in the dark
tonight lust will blister on menopausal gritty tongues
and blind vultures will circle parameters of a man’s heart

tonight middle aged men will look for love in midtown bars
and women selling artificial flavors to the tune of hallelujahs
will sharpen their knives

tonight poets will find the words to color their hell
and dip their pens in wounds that aren’t even theirs

tonight somewhere it will rain on wingless birds their love songs mending broken pillows
in high notes

tonight she will step out with her hair down, in new stilettos
she’ll blow a kiss with naked lips through the door left ajar

tonight, tonight’s no different than any other night
the walls are thin, the moon is skinned, blindfolds handed free

Beirut
            (PTSD)
by SILVA ZANOYAN MERJANIAN

Over there
all that happened
(and didn’t happen)
folded
packed in  mental mothballs
stories fading with creases
some reduced and softer versions

wonder why I preserve breaths
forced through my lungs in those days
stringed around the eye of a demonic hurricane
circling, nameless
shaking me shameless

on nights when a collective sigh
stings and I can’t tell
which part tolls for me
and which nocturnal howls
do lift the dust
then relive in slivers
on a pink tip of my tongue
afraid to bite a dreamt memory
klaxons singing street vendors down

I want a dripping whiff of that afternoon coffee
a little bitter, a little hot
those ten minutes when no one minds
a willed cease fire
and time hovered upon us
long enough for my mother
to build castles in my cup

over there
the man flying his doves
on the roof across two streets
remains a blur
but the doves stirring the air
in perfect unison
(I had named them after heroes long forgot)
sometimes still raise dust
of their feathers’ aches in my room

I believed then
I could break away
break away

I did one day
but the doves were  left to die

over there
at dusk my father played the mandolin
and my mother’s voice filled all the gaps
between our breaths –
the dam that held overflow of war
almost long enough for us to dream

why do I long for hell
on nights
when I can’t sieve my sigh from the wind’s eye
and I wonder if I really ever broke away
from a circle named dead doves

perhaps
scent of jasmine
in those memories
still smells like home, back home.

Refugee
by SILVA ZANOYAN MERJANIAN

Outside, desert air licks tents with an icy tongue,
creeping under pegs unto the sand floor inside,
where she waits morning, legs squeezed, trembling tight.
Her mother’s warm breath with a hint of onion and lentil smell
brushes on her face, calms tremor of awake nightmares,
her sister’s knees dig into small of her back.

She tucks her cold feet under her aunt’s ample buttocks,
finds comfort and safety in the call of unwashed bodies,
familiar, earthy, sweat of family in deep disturbed sleep
on worn beige mattresses pressed side by side.

A limb resting on her distended bladder feels heavy,
she knows she has to hold it in, till light leaks
from between clouds bearing down, birthing morning relief
over a tense night battling more than a winter’s wrath.

It is not safe to walk at night to the one makeshift bathroom outside
her father had said, not even holding mother’s hand.
She remembers the stars as they faded one by one with each thrust,
when strange men tore into her that night, their moans mocking whimpers
escaping through large fingers pressing on her mouth.

She feels the sting first, between her bruised thighs,
before the wet warmth soaks through her pink pajamas,
darkening with yellow and red princess patterns
into the coarse mattress, where her siblings lie
entangled in fading dreams of home.

She couldn’t hold, she is after all only eight years old.

Silva Zanoyan Merjanian is a published poet residing in Southern California with her husband and two sons. She recently released the first volume of her poems Uncoil a Night with all proceeds donated to a charity helping innocent families caught in middle of wars.  She has been published in Streetcake Magazine, Miracle-ezine , The Literary Groong, Mad Swirl, The Galway Review, and The Artistic Muse   (December 2013 issue.)  Silva has been invited to read and introduce her recently released book, and participate in the Poetry Bus in August at the Fermoy International Poetry Festival, 2013.

 

 

Editorial Note: (Please Read Closely Before Submitting)

Poets Basement is now on Facebook. Find us as http://www.facebook.com/poets.basement.

To submit to Poets Basement, send an e-mail to CounterPunch’s poetry editor, Marc Beaudin at counterpunchpoetry@gmail.com with your name, the titles being submitted, and your website url or e-mail address (if you’d like this to appear with your work).  Also indicate whether or not your poems have been previously published and where.  For translations, include poem in original language and documentation of granted reprint/translation rights.  Attach up to 5 poems and a short bio, written in 3rd person, as a single Word Document (.doc or .rtf attachments only; no .docx – use “Save As” to change docx files to “.doc”).  Expect a response within two months (occasionally longer during periods of heavy submissions).

Poems accepted for online publication will be considered for possible inclusion of an upcoming print anthology.

For more details, tips and suggestions, visit http://crowvoice.com/poets-basement. Thanks!

More articles by:

Editorial Note: (Please Read Closely Before Submitting) Poets Basement is now on Facebook. Find us ashttp://www.facebook.com/poets.basement. To submit to Poets Basement, send an e-mail to CounterPunch’s poetry editor, Marc Beaudin at counterpunchpoetry@gmail.com with your name, the titles being submitted, and your website url or e-mail address (if you’d like this to appear with your work). Also indicate whether or not your poems have been previously published and where. For translations, include poem in original language and documentation of granted reprint/translation rights. Attach up to 5 poems and a short bio, written in 3rd person, as a single Word Document. Expect a response within two months (occasionally longer during periods of heavy submissions). Submissions not following the guidelines may or may not receive a response. Poems accepted for online publication will be considered for possible inclusion of an upcoming print anthology. For more details, tips and links to past installments, visit http://crowvoice.com/poets-basement. Thanks!

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
April 01, 2020
Steve Early - Suzanne Gordon
No Pandemic-Related Pause? VA Privatization Leaves Veterans Waist Deep in Another Big Muddy 
Kenneth Surin
The UK and Covid-19 Crisis
Jack Wareham - Dylan Burgoon
“Whose University? Our University!” The Struggle for a COLA at UC Berkeley
Erik Molvar
Oil industry Exploits Pandemic as Excuse to Dodge Federal Regulations, Fees
Robert Jensen
Apocalypse, Now and Forever
Jake Johnston – Kira Paulemon
COVID-19 in Haiti: the Current Response and Challenges
Jen Moore
Guatemalan Water Protectors Persist, Despite Mining Company Threats
Danny Shaw
“The Coronavirus is Man-Made:” the Conspiracy Theory Trap 
Nafeez Ahmed
Former WHO Director: 8-Week Suppression Strategy Could Stop US COVID Crisis in Its Tracks
Frances Madeson
Death Camps in the Making: New York’s Prisons During a Time of Pandemic
Clark T. Scott
The White House and the CDC are United in Stupidity
George Ochenski
What Does COVID-19 Have to Do With Industrial Pollution?
Norman Solomon
Trump’s Mass Negligent Homicide Doesn’t Let Democratic Leaders Off the Hook
Scott Owen
Another New Peace
Elizabeth Schmidt
Lessons From Africa: Military Intervention Fails to Counter Terrorism
Greta Anderson
What’s the Hang Up on Releasing Adult Lobos?
Ted Rall
The Speech Trump Must But Cannot Give
March 31, 2020
Jonathan Cook
Netanyahu Uses Coronavirus to Lure Rival Gantz into ‘Emergency’ Government
Vijay Prashad, Du Xiaojun – Weiyan Zhu
Growing Xenophobia Against China in the Midst of CoronaShock
Patrick Cockburn
Trump’s Chernobyl Moment: the US May Lose Its Status as World Superpower and Not Recover
Roger Harris
Beyond Chutzpah: US Charges Venezuela With Nacro-Terrorism
M. K. Bhadrakumar
Has America Reached Its Endgame in Afghanistan?
Thomas Klikauer
COVID-19 in Germany: Explaining a Low Death Rate
Dave Lindorff
We’ve Met the Enemy and It’s a Tiny Virus
Binoy Kampmark
Barbaric Decisions: Coronavirus, Refusing Bail and Julian Assange
Nicolas J S Davies
Why is the U.S. so Exceptionally Vulnerable to Covid-19?
James Bovard
The Deep State’s Demolition of Democracy
Michael Doliner
Face Off: the Problem With Social Distancing
John Feffer
The Politics of COVID-19
Mel Gurtov
Trump’s Cure and Our Disease
Howard Lisnoff
The Fault Lines of a Failed Society Begin to Open Up Into Chasms
Nino Pagliccia
Cuba: An Example of Solidarity In a Time of Crisis
Ralph Nader
Out of the Coronavirus Crisis Can Come Efficient Historic Changes for Justice
Thomas Stephens
Apocalyptic and Revolutionary Education in Times of Pandemic
Edward Martin
Erik Olin Wright and the Anti-Capitalist Economy
March 30, 2020
Marshall Auerback
Washington Uses the Pandemic to Create a $2 Trillion Slush Fund for Its Cronies
Ron Jacobs
Going After Maduro
Justin Podur
When Economists Try to Solve Health Crises, the Results Can Often be Disastrous
Thomas Knapp
Decarceration: COVID-19 is Opportunity Knocking
Arshad Khan - Meena Miriam Yust
Dying Planet and a Virus Unleashed
William Astore
How My Dad Predicted the Decline of America
Seth Sandronsky
Reclaiming Vacant Homes in the COVID-19 Pandemic
John G. Russell
Racial Profiling Disorder: the All-American Pandemic
Vijay Prashad, Paola Estrada, Ana Maldonado, and Zoe PC
As the World Tackles the COVID-19 Pandemic, the U.S. Raises the Pressure on Venezuela
Laura Flanders
Covid-19: Our Health Crisis is Born of Bigotry
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail