a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
-in memory of Libya’s Rajab Abuhweish, whose oral poem of resistance “My Only Illness” spread across El Agheila prison like wildfire
and clutch it between your broken teeth.
How long does it take to commit thirty
stanzas to memory? And how many people
does it take to build a revolution?
A poem for an entire people
etched in the blacks of your eyes, a vision
from God, words that flow like rivers
of lament. Still you long for the sweetest place,
awaiting your red horse to carry you
home, away from El Agheila, via
Litoranea, to a place reduced
to black ash, a well full of concrete, your
cry and song your only belongings now.
But war has taught you this–
Your words have the power to spread like wild-
fire. Your voice will ripple like a torn flag,
tremble with the flame of anger in your
throat, a heart unassailable and
unmovable. Your voice a promise
of something much more certain than life.
Soon a storm will rage in your lungs, roses
blossoming from the scars upon your tongue.
A reminder that there is no longer
any need to whisper.
Gisella Faggi has had short fiction and poetry published in several magazines, including Emerge Literary Journal, Grey Sparrow Journal, and War, Literature & the Arts, among others. She calls Philadelphia, Rome, and Chicago home.