“Sooner or Later the Body Betrays Us” by Beverly Lafontaine
The knock comes in the middle of the night.
Though it has no echo,
I search the outlines of chairs and tables,
the black fissures
they open in the dark room.
The silence I am buckled in flows
toward the night
beyond windows and walls.
In the long corridor of memory,
rain shushing stone,
fire bathing dreams.
This is the time when I am all prayers and incantations,
and I’d do anything to break
the fortress of my skin
because pronouncements accompanied by sage
have wasted my days.
The night howls its demise, no less painful now than yesterday.
What do I want?
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Beverly Lafontaine Artist Statement: Beverly Lafontaine is a Los Angeles-born poet and playwright. She has enjoyed four productions of her plays in the Los Angeles area and has had her poetry published in various poetry journals and anthologies, including Blue Satellite, Spillway, the Anthology of the Valley Contemporary Poets, So Luminous the Wildflowers: An Anthology of California Poets, and most recently, Beyond the Lyric Moment. As a collaborative artist she has worked with composer Tom Flaherty to create The Cellist of Sarajevo, a chamber music piece. Additionally, she was commissioned to create six poems that were incorporated into the sculptural work of Walk a Mile in My Shoes, a public art project dedicated to Martin Luther King and sponsored by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. As a journalist she has written for publications as wide-ranging as Essence Magazine, Soul Magazine and Caesura: the Journal for the San Jose Center for Poetry and Literature.
Beverly was an arts administrator for three decades. Believing as she does that the arts articulate societies’ most deeply held and cherished beliefs and aspirations, she is passionate about helping small to mid-size arts organizations and individual artists develop strategies that allow them to become recognized as vital and valued members of their communities. In that capacity, she has served on the board of Red Hen Press, as a Trustee of the Pasadena Arts Council and as a member of the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce Business Development Committee.