A Journal

"I'm going to come back to West Virginia when this is over. There's something ancient and deeply-rooted in my soul. I like to think that I have left my ghost up one of those hollows, and I'll never really be able to leave for good until I find it. And I don't want to look for it, because I might find it and have to leave".----Breece D'J Pancake, in a letter to his mother. 

Melinda Giordano




Fête Galante


A diamante veil of planets and stars
Swept across the sky in a dainty froth
A hint of embroidered heels glistening on the horizon
Turning in minuets and shadows
Petticoats and hems dissolved in pools of mercury
And were illuminated by a metallic sun
As round as a tambourine
And reciting silver rondels
For the loving constellations radiant as silk
In their twilight bowers
Revolving in the sky
A fête galante soft with scandals
That made the sunset blush
And melted the light
Like satin bunched at the knees of Watteau’s courtesans



The Invitation


The dead seagull lay huddled in the rocks                                                                                 
Its head curved beneath its wings                                                                                                 
In a solemn, moribund prayer                                                                                                       
The air pricked at its feathers as if the bird still lived                                                           
And could feel the salty, impudent fingers

Nature tried to interrupt the corpse’s devotions: 
The air, the ocean                                                                  
Refused to let the deceased blood,                                                                                                 
The slowly evaporating DNA                                                                                                           
Disperse amongst the shoreline’s lonely cathedrals

I did not take a photograph of the body                                                                                    
To create a memory of its sadness                                                                                                 
But the grief stays with me:                                                                                                               
Of the soft creature prodded by the wind                                                                                 
Inviting it to join its salty ranks once more




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Melinda Giordano is a native of Los Angeles, California.  Her written pieces have appeared in the Lake Effect Magazine, Scheherazade’s Bequest, Whisperings, Circa Magazine and Vine Leaves Literary Journal among others. She was also a regular poetry contributor to with her own column, ‘I Wandered and Listened’ and was nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize. She writes flash fiction and poetry that speculates on the possibility of remarkable things – the secret lives of the natural world.  

It's hard to choose a favorite souvenir - I'm surrounded by reminders of one sort or other.  One is a yellow shopping bag from a bookstore in London, "Marchpane".  The store specializes in children's and illustrated books from "the golden age of illustration" - a good time to be alive.  On the bag is an illustration Aubrey Beardsley did for The Yellow Book, featuring a lady in black choosing from a pile of books while a bespectacled pierrot proprietor lurks in the doorway.  Like everything by Beardsley it is ominous and beautiful.  The bag is framed and hangs in my hallway to remind me never to forget that time and that I should return one day to that marvelous place.