Two Poems by Carla Cherry & Art by MOSAZ (Zijun Zhao)

Art by Gilda Tenopala

Under the New Moon

by Carla Cherry

I turned off the light
before shedding my clothes on the floor.

I like it dark, I said. 
Retreated undercover.

That’s crazy, he said, and got up.
Opened the blinds.

A flood of pearly light.

He extended his hand. 
I took it, and he gently pulled me out of bed.

Walked me to the window.
We stood there 
in white silvery spotlight.

Look at me, he said.
My eyes met his.

He let go of my hands.
Traced the outline of collarbone.
My outer banks.
Two twin mounds of me.

I reached around him,
turned on the lights.

Struck by mal du pays
for his Buffalo Woman,
his mouth watered.

Gave me no time to close the blinds.

Art by Gilda Tenopala
Art by Gilda Tenopala


by Carla Cherry

After Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein

Walking in our
The unbossed.
Too blessed
to be stressed.
March. March. March.
You must have super
to not feel
the cuts
from placard splinters,
wrenching in our wombs
when They murder
another son,
Throb and thrum of nipples.
Children of the master,
daughters and sons.
Gasp for air.
They don’t believe.
It’s because you’re fat,
not that you have two tumors
along with the baby in your womb.
Weren’t you just here?
You’re constipated.
If you don’t stop
I will leave and
you won’t get anything
for the pain.
Hold her.
She’s dead.
There is nothing we could have done
because you didn’t tell us
you were in labor.
I don’t want to offer my arm
because they don’t know
the 42 Principles of Ma’at.
There are other places
to go.

Carla M. Cherry is a veteran English teacher and candidate for an M.F.A. in Creative Writing at the City College of New York. Her poetry has appeared in Random Sample Review, MemoryHouse, Bop Dead City, Anti-Heroin Chic, 433, and Raising Mothers, and has been nominated for Best of the Net. Her five books of poetry, Gnat Feathers and Butterfly Wings, Thirty Dollars and a Bowl of Soup, Honeysuckle Me, These Pearls Are Real, and Stardust and Skin are available via iiPublishing.

MOSAZ (Zijun Zhao) graduated from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in China, and is currently finishing her studies at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.

Statement: Almost all my drawings embody the conflict between real life and illusional world––which include my point of view on life and death, value and self cognition, losing my self and finding it back. Every drawing is a process of quarreling with myself that I am creating a world without logic but with order, where I have an opportunity to feel safe for facing up to myself.