Who owns our myths? If we alter them, do we undo the sacred? Do we show hubris unaccountable? Do we strike down the work of great poets against their will, when they are forever unarmed and can not defend themselves or their honor?
Complications, of course, exist, perhaps even explode on the scene of the first, next and last myth. They were once merely spoken and endlessly passed down from generation to generation, never finding their way onto paper or parchment, never once locked in, set in stone, tamed. And when finally written down, these markings of our cultural, collected soul were often distorted, revised beyond recognition, generally conforming with societal and political norms centuries removed from the oral tradition. Though there were exceptions to this template.
(Someday, many centuries from now, our own tales will be rewritten through the prism of that age. Would we even remotely recognize ourselves in those retellings?)
Spinozablue’s August edition features a new film by Shabnam Piryaei, art by Mark Zlomislic, fiction by E.K. Smith, and poetry by Valentina Cano, Howie Good and Jack Galmitz.
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The story of Cuchulain has me thinking about panthers. Black panthers. Not because they appear in the myths. As far as I remember, none do. Nor do we see lions, leopards or tigers.
Panthers are relatively small and powerful, sleek, taut and coiled, and they explode from what looks deceptively like a relaxed state. They look at ease, always, until they pounce. And then they just look . . . triumphant.
No apparent anxiety. No fear. If everyone were a panther, there would be no need for Woody Allen films.
To be a panther, free to roam across the highest mountain peaks, the lowest fertile valleys, without wheels turning inside my weary mind, without chains, unbound . . .
My book ode to fragile was published by Plain View Press in 2010 and my book A Method for Counting Days is forthcoming from Furniture Press Books. I have been awarded the Poets & Writers Amy Award for Poetry and the Transport of the Aim Poetry Prize, as well as grants from the Elizabeth George Foundation, the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance, and the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund. Most recently I’ve been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. My short films have been screened at film festivals and art galleries internationally.
When I paint, I am taken into a different place that is boundless, without limits and constraints. Paint, brush, canvas or wood mix to reveal what may have been overlooked and left unnoticed. I paint to leave an imprint, a record of my time here. The colours are an archive of memory to be deciphered by others. I blend the poetic word with the mute witness of paint. It records my struggle to keep death away and yet I notice how faithfully it sits next to me, as if to say, I have not seen this before. My art resides in the tension between the eternal and the temporal as I seek to understand what lies before me. My art explores the human need for security and the inevitability of an impermanence I have difficulty accepting. I seek to capture moments of time that show both frailty and vitality, joy and sorrow, decline and glory. I was born in the … Click to continue . . .
Hyperexcitation makes the mention of conglamourous totally awesome by rope or practice tee. Naturally Bruce Lee doesn’t have a sweet crony. Hypertension is a foolish anomaly and we should never listen. We are the bistrot of concatenated overthrow succeeding to Zeitlichkeit. Fan, therefore, feathers in night. As fragmentautilitarianism please chisel hymn giantly to the gods. Next best, token bibulous goosey fomentors trammeled in gangling mimosas terribly to twang odds. So this is all. The hips and the mods, and so this is a suture. So this is Christlike future appending hollowly to very tombs.
Robert Mueller has been a frequent contributor of essays and poems to this website journal. His poetry appears also online in Blackbox Manifold, Mad Hatters’ Review, Ink Node, Moria and elsewhere. Of major print publications, there are poems by Robert Mueller … Click to continue . . .
She watches intently as I place my oversized suitcase on the bed and slowly start to unpack. Her deep brown eyes have little stars in them, birthed from the howls of ravenous wolves. Sometimes I forget she is not my daughter, her complexion mimics mine so perfectly. I pull out an old pair of jeans, fold them, and put them in a drawer. She rubs her tiny flat nose with the back of her hand, leaving it lightly glazed and a bit shiny. I put a bra into my laundry bin. She picks at the edges of the black button eyes of the teddy bear she is holding tight against her chest. As I gradually approach the bottom of my bag, she starts to rock left to right, shifting her weight from one heel to the next, wearing down the soles of her Mary Janes, but my movements remain methodical. We’ve been through this before, … Click to continue . . .
As I lie sleepless in the semidarkness, birds warm up their voices, & it occurs to me that only birds know what birds are saying, just as only you know how to make me crackle & roar like the burning lab of a mad scientist.
THE SUICIDE PROJECT
1 Everyone who knew you knew you loved guns,
& when you pressed the nickel- plated barrel of a favorite under your chin,
the winos drinking in the shadows of the park stumbled,
& a bee zoomed up from the depths of a flower,
a striped spaceship escaping the monotonous gravity of Earth.
2 Death made a black wreath of its red & wrinkled hands,
& you climbed through into a garden only moments away & lighted by rain.
I’d barely seen him, his body angled like a knife around the hallway, his profile pushing the night back like a flashlight. My voice crystallized and cracked into shards, so when he spoke, I had nothing to say. Sometimes, even now, I still feel like I’m picking up glittering pieces.
Valentina Cano is a student of classical singing who spends whatever free time she has either writing or reading. Her works have appeared in Popshot, Golden Sparrow Literary Review, The Black Fox Literary Magazine, Ontologica, Spinozablue, Congruent Spaces Magazine, and Danse Macabre among numerous others. You can find her here: http://carabosseslibrary.blogspot.com