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Thursday, January 12, 2012


by Rochelle Owens

Amazed at the sound
the little wooden bambino
l  i s t e n s

the blocks falling
on a stone floor
“in my father’s house”

Amazed at the touch
The little wooden bambino
 f e e l s

an icon hanging
on a nail
“in my mother’s house”

Amazed at the sight
the little wooden bambino
s t a r e s

on my mother’s face
a melancholy look

disease  famine  torture  war

a spider rendering light

on my mother’s face
one eye cut into pieces

covetous brotherly love

Amazed at the smell
the little wooden bambino
I n h a l e s


an apple and a knife
paring the apple
without breaking the peel

throwing the parings
beyond the edges
of a page

disease  famine  torture  war

Amazed at the taste
the little wooden bambino
b I t e s

an apple

his rosebud mouth an irregular shape

covetous brotherly love
beyond the edges of a page

Rochelle Owens is the author of twenty books of poetry, plays, and fiction, the most recent of which are Solitary Workwoman(Junction Press, 2011), Journey to Purity (Texture Press, 2009), and Plays by Rochelle Owens (Broadway Play Publishing, 2000). A pioneer in the experimental off-Broadway theatre movement and an internationally known innovative poet, she has received Village Voice Obie awards and honors from the New York Drama Critics Circle. Her plays have been presented worldwide and in festivals in Edinburgh, Avignon, Paris, and Berlin. Her play Futz, which is considered a classic of the American avant-garde theatre, was produced by Ellen Stewart at LaMama, directed by Tom O’Horgan and performed by the LaMama Troupe in 1967, and was made into a film in 1969. A French language production of Three Front was produced by France-Culture and broadcast on Radio France. She has been a participant in the Festival Franco-Anglais de Poésie, and has translated Liliane Atlan’s novel Les passants, The Passersby (Henry Holt, 1989). She has held fellowships from the NEA, Guggenheim, Rockefeller, and numerous other foundations. She has taught at the University of California, San Diego and the University of Oklahoma and held residencies at Brown and Southwestern Louisiana State. This is Rochelle Owens' twenty-fifth New Verse News poem.