It is so dark;
clouds must be covering up the stars.
Yes, I’m certain that’s the reason for it.
There is only a slash, a ladle of light
from the waxing gibbous moon.
It is the time of pornography, regret,
terror, and other secrets, although
sexual fantasies can present themselves
at any time and dark seems to equal covert.
But, it’s the dark that seems to promise
the most faithful intimacies.
As a youngster, I loved secrets, the eternal
ritual of secrets: bending close to hear them,
the familiarity, the confidence given
that no one would ever know what I just heard,
the confidence from the whisperer
that I would never tell anyone (or maybe
that I would tell, if that was the goal).
Now I am older and don’t like the unrevealed
as much as I once did. The unwanted pregnancy,
the torrid love affair...I can no longer keep track
of secrets; I no longer see their importance,
their urgency for me or the whisperer.
The places in my soul where I kept secrets
are taken up with anxiety in regards
to my own mortality. The dark is that place
where I search every corner for my wrongdoings,
where (often on my knees) I beg forgiveness—
from you who read this,
from the moon, from Jesus, from my dead parents,
from every waxing and waning moon.
Ignoce me, I pray, fiat mihi in aeternum vive.*
*Forgive me, let me live forever.
Martina Reisz Newberry’s newest collection, BLUES FOR FRENCH ROAST WITH CHICORY is due for publication from Deerbrook Editions in 2019. Her latest book is: NEVER COMPLETELY AWAKE (Available from Deerbrook Editions). Her work has been widely published in the U.S. and abroad. She lives in Los Angeles.