Clara Burghelea is a Romanian-born poet with an MFA in Poetry from Adelphi University. Recipient of the Robert Muroff Poetry Award, her poems and translations appeared in Ambit, HeadStuff, Waxwing, The Cortland Review and elsewhere. Her collection The Flavor of The Other was published in 2020 with Dos Madres Press. She is the Translation/International Poetry Editor of The Blue Nib.
Whatever drains you
The shrunken footprint of this Greek summer, a tiny slip of a cloud up
the July skies. Folding longing into itself. Hear the sea house crinkle
with silence, your own heart, an Ikea light fixture. To be held in every
jar of home preserved beetle. At night, grief wafts through the heating
ducts, pregnant with steamy breath. A three-wheeled vehicle of discontent.
Sunday afternoon, Limenas beach,
we come across a C-shaped shell.
I run the tips of my fingers across
the edges. This end of September,
a genuflection of fall. A stingless bee
on some withered chrysanthemum.
Before we make this our last station,
place your paraffin palms on the past
few years and squeeze the melting
moments dry. Pegging clothes
to the washing line. Rain glinting behind
the garden. Heath churning the air. Stone
dry womb, your breath silk-stocking
the view. Some blood smearing the rims
of the mother of pearl. Words as symptoms,
marring the gaze, then sea silence all around.
Mal de Mer
Behind the fissures, salty wounds. Their ebb and flow healing bouts
of the Aegean. A precise animal, cutting waves, one breath holding
the next, sand bruises. Air singing of torpor, secluded scent of the armpits,
worn out by the heaviness of your body next to mine, the gladdening breeze
of god’s lungs over still things. A batch of turnings and returnings.
Poetry in this post: © Clara Burghelea
Published with the permission of Clara Burghelea