{An Umbrella Special Feature}

Lee Slonimsky

is the author of four collections of poems: from SRLR Press, Talk Between Leaf and Skin (2002) and Money and Light (2009); and from Orchises Press, Pythagoras in Love (2007) and the forthcoming Logician of the Wind (2012).

His journal credits include Atlanta Review, Blueline, The Carolina Quarterly, Measure, and Valparaiso Poetry Review.

With his wife, the Hammett Award winning novelist Carol Goodman, he has co-authored the Lee Carroll urban fantasy series. Lee conducts a poetry writing workshop, Walking with the Sonnet, in New York City.

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Seaside Bench, Sorrento

When Wilhelmina F. Jashemski found
Vesuvius had outlined some ghost-roots
of trees beneath the lava-sheeted ground—
empty spaces traced with pebbles—missing truths
of leaf and bark, species, were brought to light.
Her plaster casts could resurrect the dead,
at least as sculpture, art.

                                   And now the flight
of sea hawks hints at pterodactyl blood
while ancient sunlight shimmers on the bay,
and our thoughts turn to love, which if it lasts
a year will flirt with immortality.

Vesuvius has nothing new to say,
haze-shrouded, calm. This all goes by so fast.

There’s more than one kind of catastrophe.