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Two poems from Maria Isakova Bennett

Love Letter

The colour of you at the station today
is nothing I know the shade of –
you are a green myth;
the clothes you bought for me still hold our scent.
Your skin buzzes in my hands –
I can always see water-stars when I’m close to you.
Remember our first bed –
maroon and cream
and how the sheets made us feel Bedouin?
Stills of every place we slept silver through me –
there are lights flickering at midnight windows.
Do you see the stars darling: the way we keep striving?

First published in Crannog 39, June 2015

Habibi

leans in close –
strikes his breast like a confession
offers his open hand to me
strikes his breast
offers his open hand

big love, he says
shakes his head
presses his lips like a prayer
closes his eyes, and I close mine
and feel a shift
like the stagger of a lift
and a fall to where
some words can only be felt

Habibi: Arabic for my love;

First published in Abridged July 2015

Maria Isakova Bennett

Maria’s poetry and reviews have been published widely in, amongst others, Bare Fiction, Tears in the Fence, Crannog, Envoi, Southword, Orbis, The Interpreter’s House, and Manchester Review.

She was highly commended in the Gregory O’ Donoghue Poetry Competition, shortlisted in the Munster Literature Chapbook Competition, and awarded first prize in the Ver Open Competition judged by Clare Pollard in 2014.

In 2015, Maria was shortlisted by Cinnamon Press, and placed second in the Poised Pen competition with her poem, The 57th Iron Man. Maria has appeared in The Best New British and Irish Poets 2016, and collaborates with poet Michael Brown on projects in galleries on Merseyside. Her debut pamphlet, Caveat, was published by Poetry Bus Ireland last year.

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