Native New Yorker LindaAnn LoSchiavo, a four time nominee for The Pushcart Prize, has also been nominated for Best of the Net, the Rhysling Award, and Dwarf Stars.

Elgin Award winner “A Route Obscure and Lonely” and “Women Who Were Warned,” Firecracker Award and IPPY Award nominee “Messengers of the Macabre” [co-written with David Davies], “Apprenticed to the Night” [UniVerse Press, 2023], and “Felones de Se: Poems about Suicide” [Ukiyoto Publishing, 2023] are her latest poetry titles.

In 2023, her poetry placed as a finalist in Thirty West Publishing’s “Fresh Start Contest” and in the 8th annual Stephen DiBiase contest.

You can find her on Twitter:



Like marriage, this will hurt, a sacrament
That marks flesh, inks and needles, an array
Of patterns, birds, begonias, names entwined.

Observing his new bride, examining
Marmoreal fresh skin, I’m noticing
Three hickies on her neck, love’s artifacts.

His rage, suppressed for now, will take that throat,
Stain it with thumbprints, purple necklaces
Requiring camouflage—scarves, turtlenecks.

Inside a heart, the artist carefully
Inks her beloved’s name, an alphabet
Of dark regrets, as if she’ll be unmoored
Without this simulacrum. Ownership
Of permanent I.D.—tattoos, birthmarks—
Is useful when cops find a battered corpse,
Need ghostly guides, a name tag for the morgue.


Cat lover and Japan’s “Renaissance Man,”
Prolific, versatile, he was fed fame
Yet courted death, love sick for its embrace,
Gorging himself on silver gelatin
Tableaus preserved with Shinoyama’s lens,
Depicting Yukio as a parade
Of dying men, a strange rehearsal for
Seppuku, door to exile, no more dreams
Tormenting him with right-wing politics,
Imperial ideals, once victory’s
Laurels escaped—exhaling his pen name.
            A remedy without consequences
            Was the insouciant equality
            Of ritual finales, red slashes,
            His dagger an attentive butler, quick,
            Accommodating, unpacking his shroud.


You’re still—alive but bored. Imagine death,
Wrapped in confounding, bleak ennui. You can’t
When you’re preoccupied with shoring up
Smug shields between oblivion and you.

Rejuvenation juice, aerobics, cash:
Whatever keeps eternal coldness from
Nesting on you like mournful birds of prey.

At funerals, the hesitant admire
Carnations clumped atop the casket, keep
Still as officials spin eulogies,
Still even though gravediggers might need help,
Still even if fists pound the coffin lid.

Blankets disguise incisions carved in grass
Like bloodless surgery. “We gather here…”

When caskets lower, heads bow, to avoid
Observing. Euphemisms—passed away,
In heaven—underscore unsaid fears
Of sanctifying death by letting its
Seductive panpipes play upon your lips.

Keep whistling while passing those hearses.
You rush to leave before the noonday slant
Stakes you, signs your name in tombstone cursive.

Whenever clouds shroud windows, it grips you:
The dark valise, pallbearers, somberness.

Soon you’ll be weightless—though no longer still.

Released from the valise, haply unleashed
From Old Bone Man mortality, you’ll cross
The chasm, intuit the abilities
Intrinsic to the afterlife. Death’s realm
Instilled fear’s hesitation so it killed
Your spark. Brash courage came to a standstill.

It’s what will haunt you still eternally.