Online Open Mic – 2021
A. Whittenberg’s style of writing immediately pulls you in. Each poem invokes the type contemplation that by the time you reach the end, you are excited to see what is in the next one.
My Favorite Line: “The balance of enlightenment is more enlightenment, The balance of more enlightenment is transcendence”
When you realize,
‘Please return the library books
They’re on the table’
As her last words
Balances every ”I love you” she’d given
Instead of goodbye
The incessant, familiarity of instruction
of my mother
Watching Jordan’s Fall
… God, I hate November.
All the hope I had hoped
against hope for Jordan.
Dad beat Jordan, to
straighten him out, to show
Jordan, to silence him.
My brother lived until the next
season, onto the next winter,
very quiet like a fallen leaf.
The balance of bliss is pain
The balance of pain is enlightenment
The balance of enlightenment is more enlightenment
The balance of more enlightenment is transcendence
The balance of transcendence is alienation
The balance of alienation is bliss
We’re all in this together
we’re all in this together
we’re all not in this together
we’re not in this together…
we will surely
shame on you
for eating flesh
the protein of your friends
(at least, you didn’t eat your sister)
but come on — what were you thinking?
survival excuses everything except when it doesn’t
after your plane crashed into the Andes Mountains
after the impact, the crush of metal, the raging fire drowned by the snow
more bad luck
the avalanche, the avalanches
being lost, being broken
and you can’t eat the rugby balls and the plane food is gone
the hunger, the relentless cold, the hunger, the screams,
where was the utility?
civilization sent search parties that couldn’t find you
nourishment was only a 60 mile walk away or at least the goat herders
you had to find your own cure
you saved yourself
A Whittenberg is a Philadelphia native who has a global perspective. If she wasn’t an author she’d be a private detective or a jazz singer. She loves reading about history and true crime. Her other novels include Sweet Thang, Hollywood and Maine, Life is Fine, Tutored and The Sane Asylum.