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Susan Ahdoot is a native Angelino and finds much inspiration in the city that holds such hatred and wonder. She had three chapbooks: Heat, The End to Inertia, and Before Yes. Publication credits include: GW Review, LOUDmouth, Poetix and The San Gabriel Valley Poetry Quarterly. She has poems slated for publication in LOUDmouth, and an upcoming edition of Spire Press, Censored: The Poems We Couldn¹t Publish, and the premier issue of the anthology The Great American Poetry Show.


In the quiet of this house
I sit in my old bedroom,
now office painted the pink
I would have loved as a girl.
Then my walls were mint
green. Year after year, each
change of paint, each new layer
matched to the old. The walls
are changed. Doors replace 
a window to a view of banana
trees and orange blossoms, 
a slab of red concrete with
a hole where the clothesline
pole was sunk, our wet
socks and pants and shirts
left to dry in the moist air
of the Pacific breeze. I am
alone in a house I was never
alone in. My parents preferred
nights at home to dancing,
dinners made in the kitchen
to take-out. Our infrequent
baby-sitters the cheerleaders
my mom coached. Our favorite,
named Marvel. Imagine.

In the quiet of this house
I sit in my old bedroom
typing words onto a virtual
page, sifting for meaning
in a house that echoes
my footsteps and those of
my mother, my father, my brother.
A house where company meant
sleeping on the couch, where 
I can barely fit my life as
a single, and we were four.
There is only one bed here
in the room that was my parents
with the dresser that was 
my parents, and it is all so new
and familiar walking these halls
to the bathroom that we shared.
I have replaced sinks, toilets, cabinets, 
walls, floors, doors, windows and
childhood taps my shoulder
every morning, whispers hello.

In the quiet of this house
I sit in my old bedroom
wondering how it is that
I remain, here, single
searching for something
I can't quite name, but that
I will continue to slip
into shape and meaning.
It is here, that I can look
more intimately than 
was ever allowed.



© 2004 Susan Ahdoot


Make-out Hangover

My eyes are half-mast above
half-moons of late night shadow.
My brain is a reluctant child.
My skin is sensitive to the weight 
of air, the brush of cloth. I am heavy 
with the scent of you and 
my smile is so wide it hurts.


Dead Air

So this is how it ends
with this silence between us
like a desert where harsh winds
rage. My eyes are red and 
my mouth gritty with words
unspoken, swallowed into 
nothingness, the swirl of space, 
the shadow of sand. Winds 
have obscured the place 
from where we've come 
and I have no compass 
back to you. I need you to reach 
for me, find my hand, pull me 
to the safety of your hum.


Coming Up From the Metro
San Michel, Paris - May 2004

Last night
I was the spring flower
Blossoming into remnants of winter
Crimson tipped
Lips stained bloody
Pulling heat from everywhere


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