A Journal of poetry and kindred prose

Arlene Ang

lives in Spinea, Italy. Her poetry has appeared Forklift Ohio, In Posse Review, Six Little Things, Siren and 21 Stars Review.

She received the 2006 Frogmore Poetry Prize (UK) and serves as a poetry editor for The Pedestal Magazine and Press 1. More of her work can be viewed at Leafscape.

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Open House Sonnenizio on a line from Jarman

Modern and made to last, at least in theory,
the mermaid sculpture in the garden was missing
an arm. The young couple, linking theirs, made
a path through the maidenhair ferns by the yellow

gate. The granite paving made their steps tap
like nails against a windowpane. What made
them pause before the made-in-china wind
chimes and smile—if not love? Her maiden aunt

would’ve made a fuss about the peeling paint
and wild wild west hedges, would’ve been dismayed
by the slate chippings that made the foliage
appear like factory-made defects. The realtor,

his hair done in pomade, showed them around.
The rum in his breath made them privy to wisdom.



Col San Martino, Late Winter

This is where the small car chugs
to a stop. Rust erodes red paint,
the sheen swept away by rain.

Sun—a crushed orange—bleeds
through afternoon mist. 45 miles
away, he is writing a novel on snow
crystals; your sons have his eyes.

From this hillside, the vineyards
sprawl like cemeteries, grape
stalks crucified on white pales.

Distance is crossed in dreams: he is
never there. Like turtles, children
grow out of their house. Did you really
believe you came for the Prosecco?

This is the place where an old woman
watches from her window. Silence
quivers your hands on the wheel.

The journey is over. You empty
your pockets on the front seat: old coins,
a bracelet, fridge notes, his birthstone.
There is no burden like unwanted things.