Monday, May 19, 2008

First review of my new chapbook, A Cure for Suicide

Saturday, May 17, 2008


In a “Cure for Suicide” by Larissa Shmailo, Shmailo writes (as the founder of Fulcrum Magazine Philip Nikolayev points out in his introduction) as if she is …” constitutionally predestined to sing out her lines…her eyes filled with life and love, pain and death, freedom and coercion, the real of the mind and the imagined of the heart.” In the poem “Dancing with the Devil,” the poet sings about the need to throw caution to the wind and trip the light fantastic with the Devil:

“They say if you flirt with death,
You’re going to get a date;
But I don’t mind—the music’s fine,
And I love dancing with someone who can really lead.”

Shmailo put herself in the deceptive calmness of the eye of a hurricane, asks us to tell her what makes us tic, and takes us on the Harlem River Line, like the “Duke” took us on the “A” train. In a sea of mimics this poet is an original voice.

To order go to

Or send $7 to Gloria Mindock Cervena Barva Press POBOX 440357 W. Somerville, Ma. 02144

Doug Holder/ Ibbetson Update/ May 2008

Friday, May 09, 2008

Warsaw Ghetto

From the new CD Exorcism.

I am the Warsaw Ghetto
I am the underground railroad
I am a hero
I am the people who sang songs
Who said the Lord's prayer and the Sh'ma Yisrael
As the Nazis led them to the gas chamber.

I am a five year old girl in Jim Crow Mississippi going to school
I am Rosa Parks: I stand before the policeman
Before his club and his gun
And I say: no.
You can't have mine

They tortured me and I confessed, I couldn't help it
They put electrodes on my ---
And I screamed
I told them everything they wanted to hear
But I I I never believed them
I never believed their lies
I always believed in love
Could see, in the distance, the light
And wait---I know it will come
For help.

I am a survivor
Of Mama's torture
And Daddy's rape
At age one
Age two
Age three
And now

I survived the selfish fondlings
The inspection of my genitals
The picking, groping hands
The gangbang
The lies

I survived the prostitution
The mutilation and sedation
The betrayal and attempted murder of my soul.

Don't tell me there is no God.
Who else helped me?
It wasn't you.
I called on God to help me.
There was no one else:
No mother
No father
No teacher
No preacher
No Rabbi
No doctor
No friend.

My enemies were powerful
Like Hitler and the Ghetto
But I held out
And when I tried to collaborate, wanting to die,
When I tried to surrender
I couldn't do it.
I had to stand up
Had to fight
No matter how many times they
Knocked me down
Called me crazy
Made me cry.

In the Ghetto
In the sewers
There is a record
A diary like mine
Of people who loved
Of people who fought
Of people who fought and won
No matter what anybody says.

Blog Archive