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Selected Works:

 

You Have Never Been Alone
By Victoria Twomey 2005

t
here is much that waits
much that is known
behind the secret curtain of dawn

you must be silent
an early riser
a receiver of bird song
before you can see through the dark
and realize, you have never been alone

before you can know
there has always been a murmuring of letters
moving beneath your skin
nudging, whispering

you must look closely, through your own noise
and you will see they have always been with you
they are tattooed inside your thighs
on the soles of your feet -
when you brush the hair from your forehead
you might see them on the palm of your hand

they spill out into the air when you breath
leak out from time to time
from the ends of your fingers
form words, sounds and colors
find their way to virgin paper or canvas
speak out through piano keys or guitar strings
bring sweetness and spice to your cooking, your love making

the letters, the words are outside of time
and cannot leave you
one day they shall rise up with you
letters and ashes will ascend together
imprisoned song birds set free from the cage of gravity and skin

the curtain shall part and let go its mystery
you will be gold and orange wildfire
as you rise up over the horizon
round and glorious
flooding the sky with your light
 

Published in LI Sounds 2006 Anthology

 

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Pieta

by Victoria Twomey 2004

I see the warm flesh beneath the cold marble,
the sinew tensing within the rock,
the bones protruding outward,
wet tears just below the rigid crust,
something breathing within the icy stone.

Good mother,
your son is lost
and you are forever imprisoned
by a suffocating mystery.

In this eternal parting,
the rusty nails of injustice,
have left an empty space that can never be filled.

Behold the one, who like us, must walk his path alone.
Behold the other who must understand.

Michelangelo, you were true of heart but had not pity,
for in your blindness and your vision,
you tore the dead rock from the mountainside,
and in your fever of unrequited love, gave it life.

Did you not realize this stone would cry forever?
 

Published in LI Sounds 2006 Anthology

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Light, Dark, Light

By Victoria Twomey 2005

high tide of light
rises up upon the sky

we are awash all day in glory

then we wave goodbye with the flutter of closing lids
as the undertow of time
drags the world back into its throat

it is the sea that washed us up
not so long ago
flapping naked on the beach
squinting against the harsh brightness
startled by the clamor of voices
gulping down all the air we can

what i am saying is that
your scales are vibrating rainbows
i can see your gills
expanding and contracting
and i need you to hold my hand
while i tell you a secret -

that i often dream of a dark ocean i cannot understand
that is in some other place i might have been

and i am not certain this is a finite journey
i only know what i see
the many waves of

light
dark
light

 

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"These Days"

by Victoria Twomey 2007

these days,
the old man looks for a long while and with greater trespass
into evening’s eyes
as if there were something he might wade out to

these days,
when he sinks into dreams
he sails an indigo ocean with his departed wife
gone so young, so soon
their world is lit by brilliant moonlight
she smiles and her hands are warm
like they always were
now her words sound like hummingbird wings
and her eyes are filled with galaxies

these days,
he confides more in his long gone father
senses something in the shadows
waiting patiently for recognition

Published on Poetrybay - Winter 2007
http://www.poetrybay.com/liquarterly/liq-summer2006/twomey.html

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"Resurrection"

by Victoria Twomey 2009

the sun in spring struggles
to rise up from winter’s bed of icy sheets
like Lazarus
gone dead for days
still possessing a smoldering ember
of life light down deep within
still holding fast under death’s frozen shroud
when, come the appointed season
something within him is released
and he rises, slowly, shivering
the frost of nevermore still crusted upon his eyes
as the birds begin to sing a glowing yellow song
and everyone can feel it
something warm and miraculous has come our way
something new and beautiful is happening
and everybody is smiling
as if they’ve never seen
life rise and walk across the sky

Published on Poetrybay - Fall/Winter 2009
http://www.poetrybay.com/liquarterly/liqwinter09/twomey.html

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"How Melancholy, How Divine"

by Victoria Twomey 2005

how melancholy
how divine
to cling to this gossamer thread
 
while disease does it dirty gnawing work
and time, that masked cat burglar
steals the sun and the moon
yanks the yellows and reds into yesterday
the breeze and the honeysuckle into last week
filing them away in the black hole of his sack
 
poor death, so bored, so certain
never able to close his gaping jaw
 
think of the young foal
bursting with new life
how, as soon as it’s born
struggles to stand
is soon prancing
running in circles for hours
jumping for joy
kicking out and up with its little hoofs
 
how melancholy
how divine
to dangle for awhile
in the midst of such magic

   ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

 

Upon Reading The Life After
by Mario Susko, a survivor of
the war in Bosnia.

 

"Beast"

by Victoria Twomey 2004

i read your words
and wish i could send sweet snow
to fall on those bruised gray lines

the horror of an ancient snorting beast
loose, insane
inside the breakable green forest

human vowels cry from the closed mouth of survival
where one counts each footstep to avoid the sky
too blue to bear

love curls up and hibernates in some dark cave
lets pass the black shiny boots of war

i think they must pass still, strangely silent
in the cavern of your midnight sleep

i light a candle with this poem
a prayer for cool pure snow
to fall gently on your eyes
until you see only white

 

and then
emerging in small, kind degrees
a bright, blue-sky dream
to carry you through the night

First Place Winner Performance Poets Association Contest 2004

https://www.performancepoets.org/index_files/9th_Lit_Rvw.htm

 

Summer House
By Victoria Twomey 2004


The empty house, clothed in the gray bark of weathered shingles
rests on the hill above the beach,
as silent as the changing of the seasons or the space between words -
as quiet as the sleeping terns in the dunes.

All of summer has burned away
as the autumn leaves steal what golden heat is left in the sun.

There was a lively gaggle of bronzed children here,
running in and out,
slamming the screen door over and over,
smelling of ice cream, bug spray and sea salt.

Gone are the damp half-moon spots on the porch steps
where they sat in their wet bathing suits
exhausted from a day’s duet with the gulls.

There are no more warm, thick breezes
pungent with the perfume of seaweed, abandoned shells and summer grasses -
just this house, the unceasing rhythm of the waves,
and the grains of memory and time that have fallen through the cracks in the wooden floor.

As the house dreams on through its winter slumber,
one can go beyond its gate,
down the steep wooden steps,
to the dunes grown cold as yesterday’s embers,
and hear the gulls sing on, alone.

 

Appeared in "Shoreline Sonata" video for WLIW
https://www.wliw.org/21pressroom/s/shoreline-sonata-a-long-island-love-story/211/