Alec Solomita — The Hill

Poetry

The Hill

 

Pinned on an elementary easel,

adrift, befuddled, out of joint,

Yeshua resists a rushing sense of dread

and turns his weighty head toward

his doubles, first to his left, then his right,

where Dismas offers a gentle word,

a hint of hope mingled with gall,

“Your father will remember you,” and the two

look up as one. But while all below is ferment —

pawing horses, dicing soldiers, weeping Marys

— the sky is still, silent, and growing dark.

Yeshua breaks the mute heavens open with

an infant’s howl: Eli Eli lema Sabachthani!

The soldiers glance up, and then, out of pity,

or maybe boredom, a couple swing iron clubs

to fracture the legs of the thieves, ending

their suffering. They turn to Yeshua but he’s gone.

 


alec-solomita

Alec Solomita’s fiction has appeared in the Southwest Review, The Mississippi Review, Southword Journal, and The Drum (audio), among other publications. He was shortlisted by the Bridport Prize and Southword Journal, and named a finalist by the Noctua Review. His poetry has appeared (or is forthcoming) in Anti-Heroin Chic, FourXFour, The Galway Review, Panoplyzine, The Blue Nib, Red Dirt Forum, and elsewhere. His chapbook, “Do Not Forsake Me,” was published in 2017. He lives in Massachusetts, USA. // Twitter


We’ll be publishing Issue 06 in the upcoming weeks in parts. We’re doing so to keep our readers, and ourselves, interested and occupied. We need to #StaySafe in time of this pandemic, and we can only do this together — by staying inside. (We’re also always open for submissions.)

Updates: Issue / Nominations / Info | Early 2020

Updates

Dear writers,

It’s been a month since our Fifth Issue was published, and we wanted to share that in the first ten days after the coming out of the issue we received around 2000 visits, which is very enthusiastic. While beginning with Bold + Italic, we sure had been naively ambitious in expecting such a number of visitors after each issue – but our naivety has also been rewarded with this issue.

So, this post is put up here to celebrate all that it signifies, and to inform our (regular and upcoming) contributors about several other things:

  • With the help of the brilliant number of submissions we’ve been receiving for every issue, we’ve been able to nominate poetry and prose for several awards – and now we’ve created a page for that here. We’ll be updating the nominations list every time something new happens.
  • We’ve also created a contributor’s directory now, here – and we’re also working on arranging the links everywhere.
  • And the most important notice is about an upcoming Ekphrastic Challenge – we’re working to update it online soon (we may take a fortnight or so). For the challenge, we’ll be putting up an artwork from a favourite artist at times and you’ll have to respond to it in your very own manner; the best responses will show up in an issue at some time in respective years.

Please rest assured, we’ll be updating our pages accordingly with every little information we can share with you.

With regards,

The Team

PS: If you’re wondering, the most read piece from this issue is Audrey Molloy — 3 Poems, with over a hundred views alone. Have a look!


* Cover image, by Jayant Kashyap

The Installation in San Francisco of ‘Tides’, a Two-Ton Sculpture by Our Issue 01 Artist, Yoko Kubrick

Artwork, Updates

In the very first issue of Bold + Italic, we had the opportunity to feature a sculpture, titled Tides, inspired by the ocean waves. Kubrick crafted it in Tuscany, Italy of Carrara marble. She tells us it was completed on a commission for the University of San Francisco (commissioned by the graduating class of 1968 for the 50th anniversary of their graduation when it was an all-women’s college – Lone Mountain Women’s College.)

Tides is now located at the top of the Lone Mountain campus staircase in the Sacred Heart Garden – “which for me,” Kubrick says, “is arguably one of the most beautiful views in all of San Francisco.”

“Tides was inspired by the Banzai Pipeline, a surf reef break on the North Shore of Oahu, where I lived as a child. Through this form, I try to express reverence for the beauty, movement, fluidity, and energy of ocean waves. […] I think there is a sort of magic that happens when we can merge with nature in this way.” – Yoko Kubrick, Issue 01

Here is what USF wrote about Tides and its installation in SF: “How to Install a Two Ton Sculpture” – quoting one of the students, “It’s really nice to have a little rest area going up all these stairs to Lone Mountain.”

In another article in the NY Times – “The Sculptor Who Conceives Classical Myths,” – Nick Marino writes about her work that the “piece doesn’t have a front or back, so you’re never certain how to view it; the only focal point is a suggestive hole that Kubrick bored through the middle.” To which, Kubrick suggests that such sculptures “give a larger space for interpretation; if you see a perfect image of something that’s classical realism, it doesn’t leave as much room for the imagination.”

A dream accomplished for her, Kubrick informs us that of the 358 public artworks in San Francisco listed in the Smithsonian’s online catalogue, only 15% are by women artists. (a sad fact?)


yokoworkingangleginder

Yoko Kubrick is an American sculptor of Japanese and Czech heritage. She grew up in Guam, Hawaii, California and former Czechoslovakia, the contrasting cultures from where aroused her interest in the arts and now inform her work as a sculptor. She studied briefly at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Carrara (in Carrara, Italy) before leaving to work alongside professional sculptors in a marble atelier. She currently divides her time between the San Francisco Bay Area and Tuscany, Italy. Find her here!

Amar Saeed’s “Views Through a Lens”

Artwork

Amar, how so good?

“Not very good really! My journey with the lenses hasn’t been a long one to count. It began hardly over an year ago but, fortunately, it has been nothing short of amazing. While looking at them, and even later, photographs are like musical notes to me, each having a different emotion (or rather very often a lot of different emotions). However, talking of the process — how I think of it — I don’t just click photos with my camera, I press a pause button in time and capture the moment, but yes! I still have a lot to learn and many journeys to embark on. And very hopefully, I still have a lot of stories to create.”


amar-saeed

Amar Saeed, a second-year student of Medicine in SKIMS, India, is an amateur photographer. A coffee-, nature- and animal-lover, with an interest in writing, reading and learning, where he lives is a major part of what inspires him. “Views Through a Lens” is his first online publication. Find him here, and on twitter!

Laura Potts — 4 Poems

Poetry

Yesterday’s Child

 

The sun slit a knife through the womb-wet night

and bled like an egg, like a budburst head:

in the swell of the sweat on the belly of the bed,

broken-throated then and red, you said

the clench of winter let the roses grow instead.

 

But time has fled with jenny wren and left

the meadow dead. And overhead a mouth of moon

has called a mourning on this room, and soon

an ever-bloom of moss will clot the loss of you.

For the years between us are wide as a child;

 

and the tears as wet as a wound.


The Wise Child

 

I remember he fled from the fogdrop moors with the dawn

and the bells of December beyond, calling morning to the streets

while winter wept beneath the trees. A sleeping me before the door

glowed on behind my mother’s knees. With holly-forest at his feet

 

from leaping long the brawling leas, he brought the loss of blossom-blush

to fall upon the breeze: he the keeper of the keys to all our stars and

northern storms, who never knew that news he bore would bruise the husk

of heart and more, poured a prayer into the pram and handed up a telegram.

 

Pass the years upon the land, a scrap of shying light I am. My splash

of laughter never sang the spring to swing me in its arms, ever since

that winter when my eyes lost all their stars. Oh father in the terrace dark,

that vast cathedral of your heart never called a patch of moon to squint

 

a light into our room, when looming in the corners slept the soldiers

in the gloom. I saw the sun forever as a wet and sunken wound, and knew

the black that cooked the blue when I was only two. And you? The colder

soul that spat the gas to phantoms that would never pass, who blew

 

the saplings ribbon-black and burst the buds beneath his tracks, would

always be my father but never once my dad. Last and ever after that, here

where War had torn us sore and mauled our bruises black, I heard

the chant of thousands calling to the stars and back: for all the years

 

and eras came that postboy down the path. He always was, perhaps,

and is; and leapt until we lost him to the dying mouth of mist.


The Body Broken

Mass and Sunday mourning pass the chancel black

and chalice-back of I, spire-spined and last to part

my plumping bud to take the nocturne wine. Mine

 

the softly hills, mine the spill and steeple-swing

of fruiting breasts and bells, yes. We break the bread

and bless. Lady in the lancet holds the apple mocking red.

 

Dappled chant and dark, ahead the blood-bright night

and first-light glass of gasping Eve, winter’s heave

hangs always here with heads that bow before the vow

 

to never grieve the leaving eyes of youth. Truth

is lost and winterworn. Borne away on snarling winds,

the greening drop of spring falls from my hair. The cleric’s

 

cloak is a darkly thing. My deeper, deeper throat

receives the gloaming sermon there, heir of the berry

dreamt to bursting in his hand. Damn the vestal

 

up-and-swung of lust that Woman loved, budblood

and the Garden singing skin and pink bouquets, but

turn the tongue beyond the Book and in the darkest

 

places hold the harvest fruit and look above and long

to lasting-touch the apple that is loathed so much.

Such is Sunday mass and curse of we, the curled

 

Madonnas kneeling with a screaming in our skirts.

The weakly bread we break and nurse. And vow and

kneel and slaughter one more godless book of verse.


Kitchen, Sinister

Ten springs gone in my morning of life, I wore light

in the summer of my voice, in the candles once made

of my eyes. That night dusk swung out and away into noise

wild and white above town, and down in my childhood

 

garden lost the pond breathed out light grey and soft.

I remember not. But black clot and burnt in my throat

when she coughed up hot liver that night in the gloam,

the globes of her eyes gone bloodfull and long

 

did the birds scream murder outside. I cried. My

winter-ghost mother gone grey in her day, a tragedy

staring and wearing that cracked pale-fade skin in an old

kitchen light. When food was thin she served me lies. No,

 

the stars did not giggle the puddles that night

when my dark-fire youth wheeled a wind round the house,

her once-fluted mouth nursing liquor and meth. Her deathlight

was dark as a gobbet of gas, a heart in a jar on a chimney last

 

lit back when I was a lamb. After that? I took a bath. Black

was the path at infant’s end, a lack-lanterned track derailing

and cracked was the girlhood glow of my light. O mother

of mine, the window-steam bled itself pretty that night.

 

 

Under the trees, I sit in the asylum garden.

I swing the bottle to my lips and swig.


Laura-Potts-6

Laura Potts is twenty-three years old and lives in West Yorkshire, England. Twice-recipient of the Foyle Young Poets Award, her work has been published by Aesthetica, The Moth and The Poetry Business. Having worked at The Dylan Thomas Birthplace in Swansea, Laura was nominated for The Pushcart Prize and became one of the BBC’s New Voices last year. Her first BBC radio drama aired at Christmas. She received a commendation from The Poetry Society in 2018 and a nomination for The Forward Prize in 2019. Find her here!

  • Featured image, by Amar Saeed.