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3 Poems by LindaAnn LoSchiavo

After Lam Doy Died

When you outran the average lifespan

Of Siamese, your final resting spot

Was carefully considered, faithfully

Cribbed in the garden where impatient death

Meets optimism, slides in morning sun

Like a clean spoon refreshing your food bowl.

You kept me company for twenty years.

Now tulips take the springtime shift, red fire

Bathing your bones. Perennials assume

The summer stretch, self-seeding daylilies,

Bright orange flames reminding you of naps

By the brick hearth, furred belly sunflowered

With warmth. Cold winter weeks are mine to take,

Soft footsteps petting frozen ground, feline

Morse code that telegraphs what’s loved plants roots.

Note: My bluepoint Siamese cat Lam Doy had a Chinese name that meant “little boy blue.”

Golden Shovel: Diagnosis

A diagnosis leads a family on-

Wards, that halo of dark whispers attached. The

Questions, small as seeds, sprout whenever the phone

Rings, until the mind’s garden is overrun. Your

Transformation’s required, starting with your voice,

Hemorrhaging with euphemisms, lies. You could

Be an actor fed fake dialogue, words almost

A well-rehearsed performance. You could be-

Come an acrobat, clutching the girders of hope. A

Safety net’s missing. The laughter is a ghost’s.

Source: "For a Teacher's Wife, Dying of Cancer" by Richard Tillinghast [1966] Lines used: On the phone your voice/ Could almost be a ghost's ...

Acapulco by Night

Whirlpooling through darkness, undulating

As gracefully as a Chinese dragon, free

To filigree wide Mexican midnight,

Each colony of vampire bats wheeled, whooped,

Long pulsing ribbons of grotesque-faced imps

Determined to find blood to sip or share,

As a full moon clasped its chin, monitoring

Playpens of stars, while lonely North wind gusts

Continued their brisk, bitter monologues.


Native New Yorker LindaAnn LoSchiavo (she/her), a four-time nominee for The Pushcart Prize, was also nominated for Best of the Net, Balcones Poetry Prize, an Ippy, a Firecracker Award, the Rhysling Award, and Dwarf Stars. She is a member of the British Fantasy Society, HWA, SFPA, and The Dramatists Guild.

Titles for 2022: "Women Who Were Warned" (Cerasus Poetry) and "Messengers of the Macabre: Hallowe’en Poems" (Audience Askew). Forthcoming in 2023: "Apprenticed to the Night" (UniVerse Press), "Felones de Se: Poems about Suicide" (Ukiyoto Publishing), and "Vampire Ventures" (Alien Buddha Press).

Forthcoming in 2024: "Cancer Courts My Mother" (Penumbra / Stanislaus State College). Forthcoming in 2025: "Eros and His Entourage" (Naked Cat Press).

You can follow for more updates @Mae_Westside on Twitter, on YouTube via LindaAnn Literary:, Amazon: and check out the

"Vampire Ventures" website:

EDITOR'S SONG PAIRING: litteuniverses — Bird In Your Hat

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Golden Shovel: Diagnosis

. . .

* Golden Shovel Source: "For a Teacher's Wife, Dying of Cancer" by Richard Tillinghast [1966]

* Lines used: On the phone your voice / Could almost be a ghost's ...

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