Poems & Essays

04 Dec

An African Elephant, Two Nightingales and the Sea

General/Column No Response

An African elephant would have told a better story,
but I, being an amateur story-teller,
could only tell the parts where
the sea eases away from
the shore, treading with care
as a pair of nightingales dip into
the moonlit liquid to embroider their gold party frocks,

while the wings of night
finger through the knots of my story-telling,
my children curl and snicker
at my bent legs,
clicking their tongues in acquiescence
every now and then
when my recherché voice moves artlessly through
their affections,

filled with color, mystery and splendid perils,
bold and bolder,
my children become my sidekicks
in this empire of saffron-red embroidery,
of heroic dance over the blue water,
then finally, of our escape from
a small, unnoticed inlet
where the briny scent leads us back out to sea,
even when straps of seaweed belt
to our bodies:
my children clasp tiny hands over
their laughing mouths,
while I, a mother,
slip into the narrative yarns of pink adolescence.



A Pushcart nominee, Lana Bella has work of poetry and fiction published and forthcoming with over 130 journals, including a chapbook with Crisis Chronicles Press (Spring 2016), Ann Arbor Review, Chiron Review, Coe Review, Literary Orphans, Pankhearst, Poetry Salzburg Review, Poetry Quarterly, QLRS (Singapore), Sein Und Werden (UK), White Rabbit (Chile) and elsewhere, among others. She divides her time between the US and the coastal town of Nha Trang, Vietnam, where she is a wife of a talking-wonder novelist, and a mom of two far-too-clever-frolicsome imps. You can find her at https://www.facebook.com/niaallanpoe.

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