Leslie Dianne is a poet, novelist, screenwriter, playwright and performer whose work has been acclaimed internationally in places such as the Harrogate Fringe Festival in Great Britain, The International Arts Festival in Tuscany, Italy and at La Mama in New York City. Her stage plays have been produced in NYC at The American Theater of Actors, The Raw Space, The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater and The Lamb’s Theater. She holds a BA in French Literature from CUNY and her poems have appeared in Noctivant Press, The Wild Word, Trouvaille Review, Moida, Sparks of Calliope and The Elevation Review and are forthcoming in Wood Cat Review and Sanjoko. Her poetry was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
The following work is Copyright © 2022, and owned by Leslie Dianne and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
When you talk to me
with that Kingston
accent I feel the island
tilt with the tides
and pull us to the
other side of the moon
where everything is
upside down and inside out
and I am a silent shout
full of your voice
When you talk to
me your bright cadence
my skin grows dark
in the glow of your syllables
and I tan until
I am as black as coal
When you rasta me with
your sun drenched
voice I am a jewel
dropped from the stars
down to your island
into your arms
My name sounds different
in other languages
some take the first
syllable and roll it
allowing it to uncurl
in the mouth
and blossom forth
others restrain the
emphasizing the vowel,
opening up the sound
like a yawn
others laugh at the end
their voices exclamation points rising in joy
other shout it out in surprise
and that’s okay too
because from the resonance
of my name and
the rhythm of breath
there’s always the possibility
of a song
a dance, a poem
or even a kiss
Colin Morton has published many books and chapbooks of poetry including award winners The Merzbook: Kurt Scwitters Poems and Coastlines of the Archipelago. as well as stories and reviews, a novel, an award-winning animated film, and video poems accessible at https://www.youtube.com/user/alrickhuebener. Visit Colin on the web here.
The following work is Copyright © 2022, and owned by Colin Morton and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.
In some games it’s illegal,
some lands too. Authorities
bounce you from pen to cell to crowded arena.
There’s no shot clock;
the shelter you throw up today
may become your children’s home.
But you don’t lose hope:
some bullies foul out.
And your grandchildren
may extend the clock
well into overtime
when anything can happen.
Ancient temples stud the battlefield
where in lulls in the fighting monuments are mined.
Ur has long vanished, now Nineveh’s wall.
No need for dementia to rob memory
when powder more caustic than the sand
that buried Ozymandias comes cheap as life
and martial voices confound the language.
When the land falls silent and warriors are gone
what will remind us who we were
but unexploded mines lurking in the soil
to curse the name of those who went before?
Nose Hill Revisited
No horses graze above the city now.
Mint and sage, the prairie’s scent remains.
Abandoned cars we found as boys,
home to families of fox or skunk,
have long-since been hauled away.
I leave the gravel path,
follow deer trails into willow brake,
through damp coulee where spring runoff pools,
look out at mountains snow-capped in the sun,
or east toward the vague horizon,
the mirage I chased so far.
On the frontier of a growing city
poised between boom and bust,
we walked to schools named for Mounties
‒ Colonel Irvine, Colonel Macleod ‒
grew up itching for a fight
or challenge, enemy or rival.
We roamed hills known for eons
to hunters who left little trace.
Wrote our initials in fresh cement,
instant fossils of the post-war boom.
We’d do anything to matter
though we saw what it did to our dads.
We climbed a slope where we cast a long shadow,
shouted our names to the wind.