Art: "Fearscape" by Lavinia Munteanu

Poetry: "Should You Visit the Desert" by Amy Lerman

The “g” is silent is Saguaro, and no coyotes

wear bandanas around their necks. Most

of the year, runners and hikers tread linear

paths called washes, though only a few

times a year, maybe even just for hours,

do these surface water. Days after days

into days yield cloudless, so rare rains

abstract the sky into a Rothko canvas,

dark greys overlapping patches of blue

and white, and after—creosote scents

the air, a musky mix of camphor plus

methanol oiling from its leaves. Black

lights held by suburban hunters illuminate

backyard scorpions while ocotillo purple

in May, all while dust levitates, swirling

lost lariats atop the chapparals lining

the highway. 

Published April 26th 2024

Amy Lerman lives with her husband and very spoiled cats in the Arizona desert where she is residential English Faculty at Mesa Community College. Her chapbook, Orbital Debris (Choeofpleirn Press, 2022) won the 2022 Jonathan Holden Poetry Chapbook Contest, she has been a Pushcart nominee, and her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Tipton Poetry Journal, Book of Matches, The Madison Review, Radar Poetry, Slippery Elm, Rattle, and other publications.

The technique Lavinia Munteanu used for her work “Fearscape” (29,7 x 42 cm, 2024) is collage. This was realized (together with other works) in different steps since the attack of Hamas on Israel in October 2023. By addressing this topic she has tried to work through what it means to live under-ground, deep into the earth, to hide and to fight (& also to attack the “outside world”) and the conflicts that result from this state. How can the humane be “saved” under such conditions? Her work on this traumatic theme is a work in progress, she could not find an answer to this question so far, but she will keep on searching.