Proximity Alert

A cigarette, a rum and coke,
strange refreshments
while nature stitches
tissue to tissue
shunning threat of
tobacco burns
or alcoholism.

I once thought
we were the same
tissue until
I was grafted
into an olive tree
wild but adopted
by a new root.

You and I thought
we tingled with the same blood.
We were simply breathing
in the same place
at the same time.
We mistook the fragrance
of tomatoes on the vine
for the fresh bond of love.
Yes, a happy mistake
corrected by the taste
of too many taboos
rubbing the tongue raw.


Poet Richard Holleman lives in San Diego, CA where he works as a software engineer. He loves to read and write poetry in his spare time. He has published poems or upcoming poems in Poet’s Haven, Awakenings Review, Boned, and Torrid Literature Journal.

Artist Ira Joel Haber was born and lives in Brooklyn. He is a sculptor, painter, writer, book dealer, photographer and teacher. His work has been seen in numerous group shows both in the USA and Europe and he has had 9 one man shows including several retrospectives of his sculpture. His work is in the collections of The Whitney Museum Of American Art, New York University, The Guggenheim Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum,The Albright-Knox Art Gallery & The Allen Memorial Art Museum. Since 2006 His paintings, drawings, photographs and collages have been published in over 230 on line and print magazines. He has received three National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, two Creative Artists Public Service Grant (CAPS), two Pollock-Krasner grants, two Adolph Gottlieb Foundation grants and, in 2010, he received a grant from Artists’ Fellowship Inc. in 2017 & 2018 he received the Brooklyn Arts Council SU-CASA artist-in-residence grant.