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‘Skin-Touch of Love’ and other poems by Nancy Diamante Bonazzoli

By: Nancy Diamante Bonazzoli

Skin-Touch of Love

Ferocious night.

We left him there;
his inhalator gone silent
as his heartbeat

We slam the car doors,
surrender to grief.

You turn the key.
Windshield wipers echo
his ghost-dance rhythms.

Defroster on the fritz,
our exhalations fog,
dripping sheen.

Pressed against icy glass,
your fist’s edge
squeaks round and round;
our flooded eyes plead for vision.

Squinting bravely,
you attempt to steer us home.

They’ll move him soon,
lay him on a slab colder
than this end-of-year night.

Opening the windows I tip my head,
invite the deluge
to salve.

I take no Sabbath
from his memory

his legacy
my inheritance—
his love
the warm skin-touch.


Spring Birds at Dawn

Every so often I dream
myself into your night arms
before we decompose
inside daylight’s shuttered coffin.

Love flows as tide,
washes bones onto sandy shores
before gathering back into itself
lone souls weeping.

One night, in a story
I’ve yet to understand,
our memories slipped past each other
into providence.

As a faceless moon
searches the darkened fields
I stare out windows I’ve never opened.

These days I nightmare far from you.
That you live on somewhere
is a fair proposition.

I choose to believe
the dead live on—
singing as joyfully
as Spring birds at dawn.



Sun, reaching us through glass
ascends the sleeping mountain
of your body.

We are blessed.

In Madagascar,
starving children with desperate
mothers rise each day
to mine mica
in dirt tunnels,
swallowing dust
hour after filthy hour.

Meanwhile, in New Delhi, traffickers
cripple children for begging;
mutilation promises rupees
from pitying strangers.

Here in America,
seven hundred thousand
children’s hearts break
from abuse and neglect.

What gods have we created,
who steal such innocence?

Watching that same sun
creep up our papered wall
my own belly stirs.
Birds call,
the calendar turns,
sunlight’s candlelit vigil

backdropped by moody nocturnes.


Nancy Diamante Bonazzoli, D.Min., is an Oregon poet, writer, and Zen Buddhist Minister. She earned an M.A. in Clinical Psychology from the Fielding Institute and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Mathew Fox’s University of Creation Spirituality. Nancy is a past winner of the William G. Doody Memorial Prize for Poetry, and her debut collection, Absolution, was published in October 2019 by Luminare Press. Individual poems have been published in various journals, including The Stray BranchRiver Poets JournalArs MedicaBlue Moon Literary & Art JournalEuonia ReviewDown in the Dirt, and Bewildering Stories, as well as in the anthology Sacred Voices: Essential Women’s Wisdom through the Ages.

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