PoetryIssue 19 | December 2013

Three poems by Emma Aprile

Scala Sancta

The day unfolds like a photograph of Janis Joplin,
poignant & shattered at the edges, a shadow
fractured under fast-moving clouds. 
February surprises me with a Lenten rose. 
It’s too early to watch for blooms,
too gray to thrill to the names I learned
in Latin, too gray to trip them off my tongue:
Helleborus orientalis, Helleborus atrorubens
which one is the color of the bruises I would get
if I lived in Cinderella’s castle, bumping into
all those banisters, my hips blooming
like a gardener’s hands, inverted & weeping?
& I, even in that celluloid castle, a pilgrim
once again, skating on my hosts’ marble floors,
always kneeling my way through Rome.

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About the author

Emma travels whenever she can find a good excuse. She has tagged along on trips to Great Britain and Hawaii, and she admires a good beach jaunt as much as a week in a big city. Her work can be found close to home in The Louisville Review and anthologized in The Beach Book.

Read our current issue:


Two poems by Anne Babson
Vignette, Townhouse, 9 a.m. by Troy Cunio
Night Becomes Day Over the West by Megan Foley
Yukon River Aurora by D. B. Goman
Two Poems by David Havird
Cretan Love Letter by Emily Linstrom
Holland by Rick Mullin
Fear in Kenya by Kristina Pfleegor
The Lounge Lizard by Ed Shacklee
Two Poems by Sarah J. Sloat
Night Flight by Vicki Stannard
Koinonia Farms by Alina Stefanescu
Thessaloniki, Four a.m. by Anastasia Vassos
Imaginary Oceans by Jason Warren
Two Poems by F. J. Williams

Postcard prose

It’s Salty by Kelly Hill

Travel notes

Anchorage in the Great Land by Karen Benning
The Value of Small Money by Megan Hallinan
Screensaver by Sandra Larson
Thirty Cents by Tommy McAree
Gokarna by Kate McCahill
Going Places by Rachel Miller-Howard
Susanville CA: Notes From The Road by Susan Volchok