to the right to the left

everything moved as if sacred

music of the church bells

didn’t leave space in the air

for the unconverted

leaf, feather, spring fluff

a charismatic choir

swinging into belief

catching onto hope

announced

reverberating

with transcendence

last week I was teaching

about the moral status of animals

and why some may want to deny it

no soul, no ‘ratio’, no language

fervent discussion in class

questioning one’s attitudes

the same week, serendipitously

I received one of the most

valuable gifts for a teacher -

a real life anecdote

a relevant experience to move

imagination, build empathy

take debate outside the text

It was the bees who extended

their grace beyond already saving

our planet and who made a home

a delicate, intricate construction

under my kitchen chair

the blooming lilacs and the wide

open window must…

I crashed.

because I was tired

because I was doubtful

insecure

confused

hurt

and you get the idea

it took a bunch of other

insecure

confused

hurt

human beings who pulled

me back — not on the track,

life is too complex to make it into a linear journey

they pulled me back into the process of seeing them — seeing beyond my lies that “no one understands”

it is ok, dear.

now I know for myself that pain pulls us within. makes us blind.

you are ok, dear.

this is why there are more of us.

Now that I live alone I seem to have acquired

a taste for talking to myself

kindly, colourfully, whenever the need arises

I also began to kiss each new leaf popping

to share the oxygen within these square meters

calling it baby boo

while drinking coffee each morning

I smile at the progression of spring

sighing loudly with awe and excitement

reminiscent of my aunts I used to judge

I read books about local architecture

play the piano in between teaching online

and if all these habits pull me over to

the strange side, it is self-consciously done

interacting with my thoughts I can actually hear

and with my small world, with each sign of life

honestly, what else was this pandemic for

if not for that

a dreamer’s ode to the encountered long awaited dream would probably be something cheesy like this —

I waited for you my whole life though I did not know your accurate shape or size or whether you were at all a thing I could touch smell breathe and make my daily bread

in the waiting I was looking and while looking I have found

fulfillments of similar taste

because what else

was I to do in the pursuit

but let’s not dismiss them so quickly as mistakes

after all they led me here

to you — to the dream that…

another season

sinusoid

of this fleeting snowflake

special

like all the rest soaring

slowly

between gushes of wind

towards the earth

strong

soft

will melt

now it’s dancing still

still

still

snow falls gently

behind my back

behind the glass

divide between my

warm flesh and

that which melting

on my palm

on my tongue

makes me fully

alive

friulian lines

texture games

fog or clouds

never sure

you are within

a postcard a dream

the soft yet harsh

the silent yet armed

with the trickling streams

the restful yet requiring

your all to stay warm, to stay

a part of you

it does swoosh through

and then all seems stamped

by the white melting layers

of memories

a sign under the light — which sounds so divine

if I don’t add it’s a neon on the street of a small northern Italian town

covered in snow surrounded by mountains

It was the first thing I saw upon arriving

Auguri!? I asked

to learn its meaning and whether I read it right

I kept hearing it exchanged as a greeting, as a blessing, as a toast

and all these contexts and all the white snow

flakes falling around it like a magical dust

and all the time I spent looking at it from the window

invited me into…

are you a soft ghost

with a body smooth

as silk, or a threatening

thought formless within

a void dark as your mind

can picture darkness

empty as his hands

when he stood before

you, past that is not

welcomed still so alive

in the face of the unknown

Sonia Blank

in between the wonder and the welcome

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