A Literary Magazine in Support of the Jewish Community

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I Am Fashioned from a Gourd by Alicia Elkort

I Am Fashioned from a Gourd

carved with an ordinary awl.

I am the bluest mountain

beyond the desert where Moses

wept. I am ribbed flaxen & sweet

peas dusting the air—

nine shooting stars transfixed

against a violent sky.

I am candles burning each Friday night,

stubborn and proud. Esther’s granddaughter

daughter of Edythe, great-granddaughter

of Rosalie and Anna. I am a shot

of whiskey before bed and a bicycle ride

Sunday morning while the city sleeps

beneath alabaster fog. I am one year

in a hospital bed as my father relearns

walking on polio-battled bones, a memory

that will carry him through his years.

I am the party where my parents met,

jazz musicians drumming through the Cold War.

I am a ballerina, a perfect arabesque

like silk, like humming.

I make landfall where New Mexico

and Russia converge on the axis—

sopapillas with honey and braided chiles

hanging in the larder, black tea

with a sugar cube on the tongue.

I am from the hope of immigrants

with nothing to lose but life.

Alicia Elkort

Alicia Elkort has been nominated thrice for the Pushcart, twice for Best of the Net and once for the Orisons Anthology. Her first book of poetry will be published in 2022 by Stillhouse Press. She was the finalist in the 2019 Two Sylvias Press Book Prize and has been published in numerous journals and anthologies. She lives in Santa Fe, NM. For more info or to watch her two video poems visit http://aliciaelkort.mystrikingly.com/.


Alicia Elkort