Friday, December 1, 2017




Only the heart enjoys
this fishing without a net;
beauty locks all the doors
and disaster breaks them down.
Long absence resonates anticipation
like the guesswork of desire,
but deep roots grow
deliberately around rock
so that any guest who finally arrives
eclipses the sun becoming the feast
and the wine and the dessert.
Touch the scar, and it
will offer some astounding advice:
loveliness fades, but not grace;
the world loves lightning
less than fire.
Love opens the hands for kindness,
and kindness is a debt
you never tire of repaying.


May your hands
reach beyond dreams
where moonlight
awakens as flesh.
May your kisses
seep deeper than rain
into the body’s
pink crossroads.
May your fingers
touch the unexpected
always with the thrill
of loving.


I miss your body
sliding over mine
sleek as lightning
with your hips tilted
a little toward delirium.
I miss the hint of dawn
in your fingernails
and the dwindling moonlight
of your hair.
I miss the arching
of your long back
smooth as a snow heron’s
neck feathers
and your upturned legs
kicking at the ceiling
when I slip my tongue
inside you.
I miss your blue eyes
where I lost the sea
and your broad shoulders
pressed against my back
while I dreamed.
But I miss you most
in the silence
between love songs


BILL WOLAK is a poet who lives in New Jersey and teaches Creative Writing at William Paterson University. He has just published his twelfth collection of poetry entitled Love Opens the Hands, Nirala Publications, 2015. His poetry has appeared in over a hundred magazines. His most recent translation with Mahmood Karimi-Hakak, Love Me More Than the Others: Selected Poetry of Iraj Mirza, was published by Cross-Cultural Communications in 2014. His translations have appeared in such magazines as The Su Journal, Basalt, Visions International, World Poetry Journal, and Atlanta Review. His critical work and interviews have appeared in Notre Dame Review, Persian Heritage Magazine, Gargoyle, Southern Humanities Review, The Paterson Literary Review, Ascent, Florida English, The Seventh Quarry, and Prime Numbers Magazine. Mr. Wolak has been awarded several National Endowment for the Humanities scholarships and two Fulbright-Hays scholarships to study and travel in India. In 2007, he was selected to participate in a Friendship Delegation to Iran sponsored by the Fellowship of Reconciliation, America’s largest and oldest interfaith peace and justice organization. During the Summer of 2010, Mr. Wolak was awarded a Field Study Opportunity in China and Japan by the National Consortium for Teaching about Asia. He was selected to be a featured poet at festivals in India four times: at the 2011 Kritya International Poetry Festival in Nagpur, at the 2013 Hyderabad Literary Festival, at the Tarjuma 2013: Festival of Translators in Ahmedabad, and at the 2014 Hyderabad Literary Festival.In 2016, he was a featured poet at The Mihai Eminescu International Poetry Festival in Craiova, Romania; Europa in Versi, Lake Como, Italy; The Pesaro International Poetry Festival, Pesaro, Italy, The Xichang-Qionghai Silk Road International Poetry Week, Xichang, China; and Ethnofest, Pristina, Kosovo.

Also by Bill Wolak: Original Poetry Pale as an Explosion (1977). Archeology of Light (2011). Warming the Mirror (2012). When Dreaming Birds Sing (2012). The Strength of the Spider’s Web Decides (2012). Whatever Nakedness Allows (2013) .Perfume in a Sandstorm (2013). The Art of Invisibility (2013). The Statue of Lightning (2013. The Lover’s Body (2014). Singing Their Lovers Naked (2014). Confusing the Gods (2015). Love Opens the Hands: New & Selected Love Poems (2015). Snow Flakes Blown Into a Keyhole (2015). The Rain That Makes Ashes Dance (2017)

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