Photograph c. 1939, et al

 Photograph c.1939


the 2-of-us came here and you’ll never know

the whirling of promises falling like snow

(train stamp fifty cents)

We planted our whys We ate our now


the someones were someones and We were too

(with buffalo nickels and how do you do)

with sweaty ifs circ ling their way down the drain

postcards leaflets bread rain


the names of the dead that We know you’ll forget

the empty rooms where our parents met

(speak hush laugh and weep)

old chairs full of tos and froms going to sleep


We stare at you whenly from sepia tone

our theres were all lost but We weren’t alone

studied silence and lose by keep

unfaltering children, sung oldly to sleep


grasping in earnest for now and for soon

and practising maybes alone in our room

(write hope smile and then) We

let our nevers remain un(if)d


Wolfgang chased down Gow-ee-thee street

(and if they could see, O those openmouthed guys

the carved painted years that We left behind

the unwritten love notes and empty parades.)


And that’s all finished now i guess

(weve children’s children whose nexts do not hear)

we becomes me and me turns to her

year by year and then by now


tick by sigh and page by leaf

we’ve stopped our nexts (we’re done with grief)

they don’t make ifs now but o what do we care

cleanse by crumble and oh by never


the whatifs we breathed have all become plain

cut bleed dance again

the world that we from/d is read and gone

sleep wait hold dawn



“until the dust had reached our lips”

(Inspired by “I died for beauty, but was scarce” by Emily Dickenson)


waxy, static lips

pursed with nothing more to say

Our hopeful plastic eyes and

still-twitching blue fingers have

congealed into flakes of disembodied styrofoam


We are the ghosts of lovers of ideals

We are mannequins


better dead than real


our wishes are lying disassembled

in molding cardboard boxes

my reddish, blusish mind

begs for hospital flowers.


  “O, tie me down some bliss”


O, tie me down some bliss

O, string me up some love

For today’s is the very last sun, I know,

That every shall shine above, above—

That ever shall shine above.


O let the bells all ring,

Unleash your voices, scream

For tomorrow’s the day when we all descend

To the darkened pit of a dream, a dream

To the death-throes of a dream.


So soon shall the lights go out

But O, the crying—list!

O the hot fast wind

And the sour air

And the music, the music beyond compare

Please catch me a fistful of bliss

Won’t you tie me down some bliss?


“a quiet murderess is Snow”


a quiet murderess is Snow




the pulsing streets 

the swaying trees

the still-warm bodies of rats

do not see that

she is burying them in her kisses


a soft cover pulled

over the din, like

the silencer on a gun, like

a fist stuffed in the screaming O of a mouth


her cold smile

her deadly embrace

fade the landscape into shades of grey,

into doves and gloves and cold lead pipes


there is no evading

the sheets

and duvets

of frost


Snow is a quiet murderess

i think, as a hush falls over the city and

my pen runs out of ink.


Samantha Mozes
Age 15, Grade 10
Bard High School Early College
Silver Key

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