Other People’s Poetry

by Luciano Iacobelli
I was a child with little to say
my thoughts and words added nothing
to a world already complete

but in grade school
I ate a piece of chocolate given to me by a kid
who laughed when I swallowed it
ha ha he said
I gave you poison
and you’re gonna die

I believed him
despite assurances from others
that the boy had played a trick

I trembled and waited for my blood to freeze
and even though it never did
I feared the death inside me
was delayed
a lazy snake
sleeping in the shade of my organs

and so a little piece of candy reversed me
drew my eyes in towards my own workings
made me wordy and thoughtful
with a longwinded hunt
for a scaly darkness
that might
at any moment

This poem was published as part of Luciano Iacobelli’s collection, Painting Circles (Quattro Books, 2012).  

Other People’s Poetry: Luciano Iacobelli

Two Poems:

      End of the Line

      Night Walk


Luciano Iacobelli is a poet, playwright and visual artist. In 1986 his first play, The Porch, was staged in Toronto. In 2000 he founded Lyricalmyrical Press, a grass-roots publishing company specializing in handcrafted chapbooks. More than 80 books have appeared under this imprint, many by very young writers whose work he has nurtured throughout his career as a creative writing and literature teacher at SEED, Toronto’s oldest public alternative school. Author of 7 chapbooks, The Angel Notebook, his first full-length poetry collection, was published in March of 2007 by Seraphim Editions.


Other People’s Poetry

Second Series

Yannos Ritsos 1909-1990


In the white egg,
a yellow chick
a blue song


The new moon
hides up its sleeve – you saw it? –
a knife


Naked, astride an elephant,
the moon crosses the river.
Dewdrops shimmering at its feet.


Guatemala, Nicaragua, Salvador.
Where did so many bodies go? On a tree, wind-swept,
a pair of worn trousers.


Where is the time to light a cigarette,
to look at a star, to speak with a turtle,
to scratch your nose, and fart?


Seek not, want not, be not.
I bite – he says – a bitter apple.


They tagged you an illiterate, those idle bureaucrats.
Unaware how on arid islands you memorized
the twelve Gospels of the Struggle.



Other People’s Poetry

In a Corner of the Sky

The old
shuts her bleary eyes.

The new
wants to paint the night

(In the fir trees on the mountain:

Federico Garcia Lorca 1899-1936