Clara Burghelea – Two Poems


While waiting for a breast exam result

You hope the hour of your becoming is here,
circular like a healthy breast,
soft and ripe as heavy fruit.
Instead, you get every other thing
of imperfect beauty
luminous cracks, suspended wishes,
vagrant eyes, mishaps,
full measures, mouths full of cinders,
the somethings, the lacks.
The outskirts of the body.
You miss the aliveness,
treading like air into baby lungs,
before fingers are born into gesture,
and eyes can feel any stretch of the sky.
In short, an inventory of your bare humanity.
Nothing is too ugly for this world.


Some Morning Unease

You slip into my mind,
a sort of urgency, defining my pace,
invalidating previous sureness.
Like it’s on my list today
not to think of you,
work with my Bridges student
overcome co-dependence,
teach research strategies
in my composition class,
attend a poetry reading in the Village.
But you seem seared
into the circuits of my brain,
quick at semaphoring your presence
when the Starbucks kid rolls the r
in my name, or the man on the steps
of The Met lights up a cigarette
under his breath.
It could be that my inner ear craves
an unknown tune of familiar lyrics
or the whisper of a disappearing body.
All these details quicken their spurring
as my day unfolds. Ghost hum filling the air.


Clara Burghelea Headshot
Clara Burghelea is a Romanian-born poet. Recipient of the Robert Muroff Poetry Award, she got her MFA in Poetry from Adelphi University. Her poems and translations appeared in Ambit, HeadStuff, Waxwing and elsewhere. Her collection The Flavor of The Other is scheduled for publication in 2019 with Dos Madres Press.