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Deborah Edler Brown is a poet, performer, journalist and author. A well-known voice on the Los Angeles poetry scene, she has also featured in readings and slams across the country. She was the 1997 National Head-to-Head Haiku Champion, and a member of the 1998 Los Angeles National Slam Team. Her poetry has appeared in two anthologies, So Luminous the Wildflowers and Poetry Slam, as well as in various journals, including Nimrod, LoudMouth, Issues, Trump, Word Process, LaLa and Immigrant Status. She has two chapbooks: Red Long Hot Peppers and Haiku Volcano. Brown will be teaching a workshop entitled "How to Tell a Poem" in Spring 2005.


The fault, Dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves...
-- William Shakespeare. 

She looks unshakable.
Under the lush tangle of red and gold,
behind clear azure pools, moon whispering mouth,
soft floral lawn, you know she is steady 
as rock. Beauty so effortless
you want to set your clocks by it.

You forget that below the surface 
the lines are already drawn,
fractured blueprints for sudden violence.

Before the rise of soft hills 
and the scoop of hollow curves,
before time and weather carved cheekbones into her face,
something split in her formation, leaving gaps
to protect what she can't remember.

She is a fragile ecosystem. Her foundation
trembles when the tremors start,
toppling all constructs, all pretense
that she can escape her nature.
Tension builds when there is no motion.
Tension demands release.

Earthquakes are not betrayals
of strength, but of expectation.

Faults are in our stars
and in ourselves.


She writes in crayon,
"You cannot be mean to me!"
Her sword is purple.

The Best Way to Eat a Grape

The best way to eat a grape is when your
mother peels it for you. It must be
green and oval. She pokes into the
endskin with her nail. She cups it in one
hand and takes back the skin a strip at a
time. Sometimes she casts it aside.
Sometimes she eats it. But she hands you
an egg of naked pulp and into your
mouth it goes, sweet, pure flesh of
fruit. The best way to eat a grape is
stripped naked by your mother and offered
one at a time. She peels, you eat. And
you don't have to be five.

© 2004 Deborah Edler Brown


"Deborah Edler Brown is one of the rarest of the rare. A gifted lyrical poet who can also perform. Her honey-soft lilting rhapsodies carry us away to a world without disappointment, where lovers meet and part without sorrow, where shadows fall in love and our love is a loaf of bread, rising."
Alice Pero, poet, host

"Deborah (Edler Brown) opened our doors of perception and helped us find the fresh clean air that resides in our souls…Don't miss your chance to be awakened by this poet; a seer who helps all see the poet inside ready to leap out."
Don Kingfisher Campbell, poet, host, publisher

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