Neil Silberblatt

October 18, 2019 Silberblatt Neil

I examine my scarred torso
as perusing a Hagstrom –
folded too many times
and incorrectly –
of a locale once familiar,
but no longer visited,
since the neighborhood has changed
and not for the better.
Here the lines converge.
Here they diverge.
Here a piece of the map is missing
where it was torn off,
jagged edged from the procedure.
I trace their contours
as surveying a river bed.
There a stream can still be found.
There it has dried up,
algae bloom strangling new growth.
They say that, come spring,
it will flow clear again.
I am ready.

Neil Silberblatt’s poems have appeared in numerous journals, including The American Journal of Poetry, Tikkun Daily, Poetica Magazine, The Aurorean, Mom Egg Review, Ibbetson Street Press, Naugatuck River Review, Chantarelle’s Notebook, Canopic Jar, Muddy River Poetry Review, Nixes Mate Review, and The Good Men Project. His work has also selected for various anthologies, including Collateral Damage (Pirene’s Fountain); and Culinary Poems (Glass Lyre Press).  His poem, Burnt Offering, was recently selected as Poem of the Moment by Mass. Poetry.

He has published two poetry collections: So Far, So Good (2012), and Present Tense (2013), and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.  His most recent poetry book, Past Imperfect (Nixes Mate Books, 2018), has received critical acclaim and was nominated for the Mass. Book Award in Poetry. Neil is the founder/director of Voices of Poetry which has organized and presented a series of (more than 200) poetry events, featuring acclaimed poets – including the current or former Poets Laureate of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont & New Hampshire – at various venues in NY, NJ, CT and MA, including The Mount / Edith Wharton’s home in Lenox, MA, and The Rubin Museum of Art in NYC. Since 2014, Neil has also been the host of the Poet’s Corner program on WOMR / WFMR out of Provincetown, MA, for which he has interviewed accomplished and aspiring poets and writers on and off Cape Cod.  Since 2016, Neil has also been battling Stage IV colon cancer.