local_library Akhmatova

by Charles Thielman

Published in Issue No. 196 ~ September, 2013

Strides a stone trail


within the quiet of trees beside walls.


Sustained by a crust of bread leavened

in the shadows of long-winged birds,

she sings poems above the statues of Stalin.



The gulag wind throws its voices

into the caverns of her loss,


lifting the black kites flown by grief.



She stands in the line of mothers waiting,

sharing the scent of rain, of breads,

clay and love,


mining vowels from marrow,

seeing his eyes

when saying his name.




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Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., moved to Chicago, educated at red-bricked universities and on city streets, Charles has enjoyed working as a counselor, truck driver, warehouse manager and enthused bookstore clerk. Married on a Kauai beach in 2011, a loving Grandfather for five free spirits, his work as Poet and shareholder in an independent Bookstore’s collective continues! And not a few of his other poems have been accepted by literary journals, such as The Pedestal, Gargoyle, Poetry365, The Criterion [India], Poetry Salzburg [Austria], The Oyez Review, Windfall [Oregon], Muse, Battered Suitcase, Poetry Kanto [Japan], Open Road, Pastiche [England], Belle Reve, Tiger’s Eye and Rusty Nail.