30 Apr

Poetry: “If I Had Known” by Sanni MonsuruAdetunji

IF I HAD KNOWN
If I had known,
I would have paused the
Sacred moment that we
Spend to spent, when the
Haze of your love
Cluster my heart like a
honeycomb.
If I had known,
I would have travelled
Through the path of time,
Just to be with you.
If I had known,
I would have been to
The sorcerer, to cast
Your aroma of love on me.
If I had known,
I would have sat with you,
Day and night, to dance
To the rhythm of your heart.
If I had known,
I would have drank
From the fountain of
Longevity, just to be
Aged with you.
If I had known,
I would have visited
The sky-
To see the star-gazer
Just to realigned our stars;
To see the moon
To aglow our faded dreams;
And
To see the sun
Just to fetch rays to
Reignite our faded love.
If I had known,
I would have listened to
The gossip songs of the
Whirling winds, chanting-
Never sow all your seeds
In on farm.
 _________________
Sanni MonsuruAdetunji
is a graduate student of Biochemistry, currently working on
Metabolism and Toxicology of Antioxidants, at Molecular Drug Metabolism and Toxicology
Research Laboratories, University of Ibadan, Nigeria. He is a young and aspiring poet that
dwells in the wilderness of word-smiting not long ago.
30 Apr

Poetry: Sergio Ortiz’s “This Year” and “Gypsy Cartography”

This Year

I’ve noticed woodrats
in my verses. They’re searching

for shiny metaphors.
They gnaw my lines, bring garbage,

fill everything with crumbs, and footprints,
I’ll have to clean it all up.

―At least they’ll have a place to spend winter―
I’ll insert similes of oats,

something about the Easter Bunny
and cheese. By spring my villanelles

will be full of fat happy woodrats
celebrating Pasch.

 

 

Gypsy Cartography

Yes, my life a map
tracing rivers and prairies

with the poems of Lorca.
A life feeding off the night songs

of gypsies.
I own a large house

inhabited by five sisters,
a blood moon illuminating

the patio, streets loaded with
wars I prefer to forget.

The days of my life made
flamenco and duende,

cartography without guns glued
to my head.

 

________________
Sergio A. Ortiz is a two-time Pushcart nominee, a six-time Best of the Web nominee, and 2016/17 Best of the Net nominee. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Valparaiso Poetry Review, Drunk Monkeys, Algebra Of Owls, Free State Review, and The Paragon Journal. His chapbook, An Animal Resembling Desire, will be published by Finishing Line Press.  He is currently working on his first full-length collection of poems, Elephant Graveyard.

19 Apr

National Poetry Month 2018: Our Women Poets Featured at The Ovitt Family Library

This year, The Ovitt Family Library in Ontario, California asked The East Jasmine Review to collaborate on a National Poetry Month project to feature work done by poets in the geographical area adjacent to the library. With this in mind, East Jasmine Review chose poets with ties to Southern California’s San Gabriel Valley, The Inland Empire, and Palm Desert. On the heels of Women’s History Month, we also decided to feature women poets with strong times to community organizing and grassroots activism. The library asked us to select poems along the theme of “Lost & Found,” which gave us room to include transnational work, disability justice work, and work around self-discovery. We hope you enjoy the poems we have selected in partnership with the library. We’d also like to thank our favorite librarian Lauren Candia Salerno for reaching out to us for this special project. Read the poems below the cut.

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15 Jun

Poetry: ‘If We Travel To A City’ & ‘The Thing About Snowflakes’ by Marc J. Cid

If We Travel to a City

If we travel to a city
I will not want to leave
until my bones ring
with the rhythm of its streets
the cadence of its concrete
the chatter of its cobblestones
Until four corner skylines tattoo
the inside of my eyelids
Until I’ve tasted a city’s morning breath
cold, coughing, the calligraphy
of its awakening
the lullaby litanies
of its sunset shuffle

If we travel to a city
I will want to stay until
my heart files its name
under “Home”

 

The Thing About Snowflakes

The thing about snowflakes
is that when we are stepped on
we get flatten-packed into solidarity,
become aerodynamic substance amassing inertia.

When they try to crush snowflakes, we gather
side by side and back to back and face to face,
merging into snowballs. And the thing about snowballs
is that we ferment momentum, generate acceleration, grow gargantuan.

When they stomp down on snowflakes
they call down the blizzard,
and soon they will reap the avalanche.

So let them clench their tiny hands around crybaby sized ski poles
and try to ride this storm out.

Maybe they’ll make it to the bottom of the mountain.
I doubt it, but even if they manage that much,
our white powder demolition stampede
will swallow the streets and drown the town.

And the thing about snow is that it’s H20
by a particular name and physical state,
and the thing about H20 is that whether
raindrop or ice crystal or snowflake,
H20 when flying free deconstructs light,
reveals white light is comprised of every color.

And the thing about people, is that we aren’t photons,
and when you combine us together we do not blend into white.
We are a hundred thousand shades of brown,
an earthen gradient, a topsoil mosaic, every stratum stacked
atop the previous ever more vibrant, ever more diverse, howling with the sound
of bitten back words finally freed, intergenerational grievances given voice spiraling skywards
where they have taken away so many stars from the night, but have you ever driven
out from under the excess umbrella of domesticated lightning, have you ever seen
the creamy glean of infinity in the Milky Way, will multitudes and myriads
and countless totalities of stars, of cultures clashing clinking combining frighten you like it does
these jackbooted snowflake stompers, unheeding, being swallowed
by the shadows of storm clouds they have summoned with their self-servicing, dead-end dance?
Or will you and I and all of us remember this time, when the thaw begins,
that none of our colors fade, all these colors of ours do not run.

Or will you and I and all of us remember this time, when the thaw begins,
that none of our colors fade, all these colors of ours do not run.

________________
Marc Cid
is a poet currently living in Downey, California. He tends to write and perform poetry that leaves his listeners split on if they’re supposed to laugh or not, and to feel kind of bad if they do laugh. This is intentional. The trick to doing this without being a stereotypical offensive comedian is in taking care to note who is placed at the end of the punchline.

15 Dec

Wild Flowers on a Table

AJ Huffman

seem wrong, a specifically heinous sacrilege
against their animalistic nature.
Buds that bloom in the darkest corners,
intrusively force eyes to take notice

of their beauty, should maintain the right of root,
should be granted reprieve from any potential

removal, should never know the meaning
of cut or pluck or pick, should have the right

to request a stone to shatter glass
vases that far too closely resemble prisons.

Bio: A.J. Huffman has published eleven solo chapbooks and one joint chapbook through various small presses. her new poetry collections, Another Blood Jet (Eldritch Press), A Few Bullets Short of Home (mgv2>publishing), and Butchery of the Innocent (Scars Publications) are now available from their respective publishers. She has two additional poetry collections forthcoming: Degeneration (Pink Girl Ink) and A Bizarre Burning of Bees (Transcendent Zero Press). She is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a two-time Best of Net nominee, and has published over 2300 poems in various national and international journals, including Labletter, The James Dickey Review, Bone Orchard, EgoPHobia, and Kritya. She is also the founding editor of Kind of a Hurricane Press. www.kindofahurricanepress.com.