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Black Lamb

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Now in its 14th year of publication, this magazine was created to offer the discerning reader a stimulating selection of excellent original writing. Black Lamb Review is a literate rather than a literary publication. Regular columns by writers in a variety of geographic locations and vocations are supplemented by features, reviews, articles on books and authors, and a selection of “departments,” including an acerbic advice column and a lamb recipe.

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Archive for the 'Cohen' Category

My spiritual practice

May 1st, 2007

BY SAGE COHEN

Now that spring has sprung, men are bursting from their dormant buds and flowering embarrassing riches of enthusiasm through the ether, dropping petals at my virtual feet. I’ve had eight “winks” today alone, and five other guys actually took the time to write me an email: unheard of in the no-woman’s-land of virtual dating.

OK, I admit it. The photo on my match.com profile is… well… old. In it, there’s a photo of me holding my cat Barney who died almost two years ago. When I opened the email tonight from “outdoorsman32” (handle changed to protect the innocent) asking “How’s your kitty?” I came face to face with the affront of my false marketing. What is the appropriate response for a woman in my position? Should I reply to this anonymous man with, “My kitty is dead”? Now there’s an interesting conversation piece for getting acquainted with a stranger. A death and an exposed misrepresentation all in one sentence. Suddenly, I am a twenty-first century version of Mrs. Peacock in the Library with the Candlestick.

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Posted by: The Editors
Category: Cohen | Link to this Entry

Where Besson Street and Chevron don’t meet

April 1st, 2007

BY SAGE COHEN

I am an unmarried woman.
My eyes fit together like a door closing
on an old life. See how the river runs
under me, the dog sleeps to my left?

I can’t tell you how to get here
because I don’t know myself
or which way you’re coming.
I drive the neatly drawn line of Route 97.
Division Street divides us.

The difference between losing
one’s maidenhood and losing
one’s mind: ceremony.

The river comes in stages,
like death. Each day the sky wavers,
streaked along the bottom of things.
I curl to fit you but you are too long.
I let you sleep alone
with your face toward the river.

The trees wear a heavy fur of snow.
I wish I knew how to receive what is provided.
There are only alternatives, back roads
that refuse the heavy grip of tires, and kisses
that heap themselves like snow.
By morning, we are exhausted with the weight. •

Posted by: The Editors
Category: All Marriage Issue, Cohen | Link to this Entry

Living below the radar

March 1st, 2007

BY SAGE COHEN

When I was a little girl facing one of the endless Important events du jour that inevitably went Terribly Wrong, my father would say to me, “Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted.”

My father knows many things. I have collected his gifts of wisdom as a kind of spiritual dowry. He has much to say about pain, truth, energy, healing, love, and kindness. But it is this aphorism about experience that has been my little lifeboat of truth, helping me navigate the farthest waters of disappointment, the darkest hours of alone.

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Posted by: The Editors
Category: Cohen | Link to this Entry

Inhale. Exhale. Ash.

November 1st, 2006

BY SAGE COHEN

womansmoking.pngAt Nancy’s birthday party at Eleni’s, the long, narrow table was divided equally into two camps: current smokers (who were outside smoking) and previous smokers (who were inside complaining about how much they missed smoking). Technically, I suppose I could be counted among the ex-smokers. When I lived in Manhattan from age twenty-four to twenty-six, I was in a graduate program with two dozen other displaced urban youngsters. Overall, I’d say we were en masse accomplished at two things: writing confessional poems and smoking.

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Posted by: The Editors
Category: All Smoking & Drinking Issue, Cohen | Link to this Entry

Exfoliation

November 1st, 2006

BY SAGE COHEN

A chorus of fat nervous birds
jitters on the rim of my table.
I offer them nothing.
Flimsy chairs scrape pavement.
A wind could take them. Underneath
bricks and bricks and bricks.
Along the endowed buildings
a neat stretch of fat flowers
combed into rows of receding color,
groomed pinker and pinker each spring.
But now it is fall and the statues are serious.
A copper horse, back arched, bites her tail.
She is green in her deep places.
I ask everyone who passes
if they know what exfoliation means.
Black and rivered says the first guy.
A skin condition says the next.
And finally I’m just here for coffee.
Cigarettes punctuate everything.
I light one and leave. Walk until I see
Washington Square Park’s arch
standing two-pronged over the park.
A woman passes. She smells fake
like roses. Overalls mute the mercy
of her breasts. •

Posted by: The Editors
Category: All Smoking & Drinking Issue, Cohen | Link to this Entry

Author profile

December 1st, 2002

Sage Cohen’s writing has been published in journals and anthologies including Cup of Comfort for Writers, Poetry Flash, Oregon Literary Review, blueoregon.com and San Francisco Reader. She serves as managing editor of — and monthly columnist for — Writers on the Rise and was awarded first prize in the 2006 Ghost Road Press poetry contest. Tune into her musings about the life poetic at www.sagesaidso.typepad.com. Her Black Lamb column is called Making It Up.

Posted by: The Editors
Category: Cohen | Link to this Entry

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