Not the moment a quiet sink borne
from the clay bottom creek, nor
the moment a neck-knotting noose
dangled from pillar in the garage,
but rather the yawn of mortar shell
ricocheting between joint and muscle,
snaked through and through even
the battledress can’t shield. Inward
we spun on then on, on this roadmap
of pouring into bones, falling, head
over heels for the shadows of old
hills cresting bare spires of the city.
Shouldering our reluctant heads to
chests, we felt an awful thirst of
waking where once was a garden-,
bed, blood bleeding in the shrunken
room of all the bodies we have loved
as if there were no winged things in
our ribcages. When the mechanics
of an ending stared over the trench
that divided us, we touched ivory
hands to salt-juked snow, touching
the hesitant art of losing in each
straggler’s palm, relaxed into stones.


LANA BELLA resides in the US and the coastal town of Nha Trang, Vietnam, where she is a mom of two far-too-clever-frolicsome imps. A four-time Pushcart Prize, five-time Best of the Net & Bettering American Poetry nominee, she is the author of three chapbooks, Under My Dark (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2016), Adagio (Finishing Line Press, 2016), and Dear Suki: Letters (Platypus 2412 Mini Chapbook Series, 2016). She has had poetry and fiction featured with over 450 journals; Acentos Review, Comstock Review, EVENT, Ilanot Review, Notre Dame Review, Rock and Sling, & Lampeter Review, among others, and work to appear in Aeolian Harp Anthology, Volume 3.