Unlikely 2.0


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Three Poems by Lisa Zaran


Our father hardly matters. During the second half of the
sun and his monster paintings, he will leave us.

Neighbors will always look the other way because
he is an artist. In the blink of an eye, he'll be on his last cigarette.

I have listened to no one when it comes to home bruises,
hopes and bleeding. I have remained at one with myself, knowing

love is not sympathetic. We, each of us, only we know
that his behavior is a disease which can not be corrected.

We are not to blame.


Like entering a maze as he goes back
into the belly of you. Without him,
your body is just an empty husk.
Silence fills the night sky.
Water reflects in the pools of his echo
and in the eyes of you, nothing.


For love is not to die
or idle on not meaning well,
but for one day, let us believe
hearts are harmless.

Time tucked away
in small cages.
Pause a minute.
When you come back, know
it's just a question.

Harmless heart, do not press
for an answer, continue
with your eyes, searching.
The day that he will not return
does not exist.

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Lisa Zaran is an American essayist and the author of six poetry collections including The Blondes Lay Content and the sometimes girl, the latter of which was the focus of a translation course in Germany, then published as das manchmal mädchen.  Selections from her other books have been translated to Bangla, Hindi, Arabic, Chinese, German, Dutch, Persian and Serbian. Her poems have appeared in hundreds of literary journals, magazines, broadsides, anthologies and e-zines as well as being performed in Glasgow's Radio Theater Group and displayed in SONS, a museum in Kruishoutem, Belgium.  Lisa is founder and editor of Contemporary American Voices. She is also the author of Dear Bob Dylan.