Issue 16 Poetry

Easter, Bonifacio High Street

By JOSEPH O. LEGASPI

 

a “mixed-use development”—huge shopping mall—in Bonifacio Global City, Metro Manila

Between the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf and The Body Shop
a station of the Cross. On a trodden lawn browning into
desert, two lines are formed for shoppers to be Christ-like.
Christ-lite, puns the Pinoy. The devout come forward to suffer,
put their suffering on display. They’d strap a stretch of varnished
four-by-four across their shoulders, ropes tied around their wingspan
arms, the weight of sins redeemed by Jesus on his march to Calvary.

Easter, Bonifacio High Street
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Review of Dosso Dossi’s Jupiter Painting Butterflies, Mercury and Virtue, 1555

By AMY LAWLESS and JEFF ALESSANDRELLI

Jupiter Painting Mercury and Venus
The way the godly Jupiter paints them,
                        each butterfly comes to life
                                   upon his brushing of the canvas,
                                                   inanimate specter becoming animate

Review of Dosso Dossi’s Jupiter Painting Butterflies, Mercury and Virtue, 1555
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Invisible

By SEBASTIAN MATTHEWS

He looked to be in his early 60s: compact build, a designer baseball cap tight on his head, beard close-cropped, clutching a smartphone in his right hand. It was eight in the morning, we were in line at Whole Foods, and the guy was wearing sunglasses.

Invisible
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On Confessionalism

By JOHN MURILLO

Not sleepwalking, but waking still,
with my hand on a gun, and the gun
in a mouth, and the mouth
on the face of a man on his knees.
Autumn of ’89, and I’m standing
in a section 8 apartment parking lot,
pistol cocked, and staring down
at this man, then up into the mug
of an old woman staring, watering
the single sad flower to the left
of her stoop, the flower also staring,

On Confessionalism
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They Won’t Find Us in Books

By WILLIE PERDOMO

And after we officially gained entry into the Brotherhood of Bad Motherfuckers, what could our mothers do but lose sleep, wake into prayer, prepare herbs & apples, cursive the names of our enemies on loose leaf, & let their names dust in the sunlight.

Now everything is clean, rezoned & paved, tenements abandoned like whack parties, what is left for us to do but summon bullies from their graves & liberate ourselves from influence.

They Won’t Find Us in Books
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