Having published almost 1,000 poems, I have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and the Rhysling Award. My poetry appears in print and online journals, anthologies and chapbooks throughout the world. In 2013, I published my first full-length collection, Parallels: Selected Ekphrastic Poetry, 2009-2012.
Everywhere the Moon
Everywhere the moon
a midnight cat
slides through crevices
and half-closed doors
and under the eaves
of shuttered barns
alive in attics
when the sky is black
no darker place to rest
before the dawn
before its death.
We gathered for a family photograph
In the Pale of Settlement
as if tomorrow would be just another day
where we could live our simple lives
untouched by unclean hands.
We made believe that this our world
had always been, would always be
and that our photograph would never fade
nor names be lost in the sepia of time
And then the Cossacks came
and then they came on vengeful steeds
and came again to blot our memory
as if we had never lived.
In this faded photograph
we could be anyone and everyone
but we had names, now lost,
and then our graves effaced
by another world inside our pale.
Signs of Life
Wherever we go there are signs
telling us to stop, turn, watch
for children at play and men at work
go slow, no exit, wrong way
the bridge freezes over before the road
makes an “S” or a curve
maintain your speed, 4 degrees
if you're so inclined.
but there’s no sign to tell us
the way to our home
or when the Messiah will come
in a car too slow.
©2014 Neil Ellman