Western Voices: Mihaela Melnic

Born in Romania, Mihaela Melnic later moved to Italy where she has lived for the past 20 years and where her poetic journey began in 2011. Her inspiration comes both by her life experiences and nature in all its forms, all the while being lulled by the flow of the Tiber River and the sinking memories of her past. Her debut collection of poetry, Change of Seasons, was published in 2018 and many of the poems from the book along with new ones entertain daily the clientele of the bar that she runs in Rome, "Cafe' Miki.”


I made my magnetic choice
simply reversing the poles
to each south its north
otherwise we're alone.

I allowed my dreams
to emerge
to overwhelm me
to annihilate me
and I don't exist in flesh anymore.

I'm just a quivering of limbs
only spinal vibration
only a waving of hips
just an ephemeral shape
in an astral picture
and I take every form
between folds of sheets
on a river's bank
into the sacred woods
where, philosophizing with the trees
whose branches do to the sky
what your hands do to my flesh,
I discovered that
I love you ..


Oh dear, from the womb
floating at first
then crawling,
walking the line
then running.

Perpetuum in motion
with stillness
in devotion...
Some truth in it, or not?

In perpetuum the laughter
sometimes followed by crying
for sorrow
or for joy.
Perpetuum in death?
What's next?

The sigh
the word
the wonder.
The glance
the touch
the hunger.
Mechanical device.
A key will turn it right?
-the heart-
Perpetuum in love
lust given
by our demons.
Dear drugs of our bodies,
are you within our souls?

Perpetuum in motion
or still
-not that it matters-
Together. Not alone.

Oneiric night (Cancer)

In my oneiric night
at the dearest flesh
the cancer seems to gnaw.

But dear, give it a closer glance.
Keys hanging from a wire, you say-
the personal effects.
One black, the key, a car's engine ignites.
The car is mine and by my man is being
steered. Why, why?
Who among us, cancer, do you want to eat alive?

Three golden keys on the same ring
are kept - to open what?
They look like honey
dripping from the bottom lip
of a man that is not mine.
Let me taste it, I fancy.
I can feel all the sweetness as
his tongue I bite.

A steak for breakfast now.
The kitchen's wide enough
the fire burns and cooks - the meat
still raw remains.

I take a path - steak cut and packed
carried with me. Where? Why?
And I know nothing of those
buildings - the passersby, they watch.
I turn my head
and the facade has spots
- is it cancer or pure art?

I find a gap between two trees
or four, or maybe hundreds.
The scent is there - my dream is here
my bed knows better than I.
Is it Sakura time?
No cherry trees but pink
flowers abound.

Look at this flower on the branch.
I wish to take it home - they pass and throw half glances- I'll bring my man to look at that.
I breathe in all the beauty until my lungs, my eyes, they hurt!

Again a child I am - the snow,
the snow on which I slide - I even fall. Just once.
A dream of winter time?
Where is the spring, the flowers
of the trees that showed me
life, life, life...
I left the spring behind.

A place to eat my steak - it's finely cut-
Here, by the guardian lake that keeps a shimmering eye
on someone's brown hand bag - from thieves perhaps.
Leather brown bag lies by the lake - I don't.

I conquer a concrete wall.
Still by the lake - how strange-
immigrants sing along in a rock cave.
I poke inside my bag. The raw meat is still there?
A child- who knows his eyes? Slightly vexed he stares
oh, such an imprudence - my hand inside to search, sitting on concrete wall.
I might disturb the show.
A man shouts in my face: A gun
is what you have?
I raise my hands. No, no!

How can I eat here, now?
The child sings, I can hear him.
Another folds red garments and curly
is his hair
and black is the young skin.
- so red the shirt he folds is...

Cancer! Why did you lead me here
outside the cave
by the lake
in snow immersed
with poplars standing
flowery branches
buildings of arts
people that watch...

The steak is cold
is finely chopped
I want to go back home.
I couldn't eat one single bite
raw, cooked or burnt.
The black key has been lost.
The golden ones
have leaves or wings
and open at least three
doors. Perhaps.
Who knows...

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