Martina Reisz Newberry: Two Poems

The Favorite Meals of Spirits

The dark is hungry for our sins,
our solutions, our abandoned
hopes and our inappropriate
projects. It is, I believe, why
the spirits love it so. The dark
craves fears and arguments and those
culminate in the favorite
meals of spirits. So, they arrive
at night, opening doors, moving
furniture, bending silverware,
sliding in and out of shadows
darker than the great black holes of
their birth. Brides without grooms,
grooms without heads, children who
float over the floors of the dark. The air is
rife with hunger. The dim tables
bear the food of spirits: thorns and
anthems, blood oranges and dumplings
made of nettles. For afters, there
will be the fruit of the bat-thorn
plant basted with the sauce of sweet
regret. Come with me, then. Enter
the grotto, genuflect, devour.

The Importance of a Sexual History

Long ago, a man asked me
what it would take
to get me to go to bed with him.

I arched an eyebrow,
said (archly)
“Talk pretty to me and
my legs will fly open
like a car door.”

Later, much later
in the relationship,
I told him, “Look.
I can play Love or
I can play War;
just tell me which game
we’re playing.”

There you are.
In the entire history
of my sexual relationships,
those are the only two
glib things I know to say
about Love, War, or Sex
except for “Hello,”
and “That is all.”


Martina Reisz Newberry is the author of several books of poetry. Her  newest collection, GLYPHS, is now available from Deerbrook Editions. Her other books are also currently available from Deerbrook Editions. Her work has been widely published in magazines and journals in the U.S. and abroad. She lives in Los Angeles, the city of her dreams.

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