Monday, February 27, 2017

So many months have passed since I smelled fresh air

She stares at me, terrified.
As well she should be. Yes, both of us know, all too well: she is the stranger around here. She would be gone before the day is over. I am the one who never leaves. 
“Really,” I insist, over her silence. “There’s no such thing as nine lives.” 
She leans back, sinking deeper and deeper into the frayed cushion, not doing much of anything except breathing heavily. Naturally, it annoys me. Hell, it sucks the air out of my lungs. The danger of oxygen deprivation does not occur to me at first. But if there is one thing I have come to hate more than her breathing heavily, it is me, having to hold my breath. 
So many months have passed since I smelled fresh air. Come to think of it, it must have been years since I crossed the threshold, since I stepped outside, into the sunlight, which—as I remember—is so warm, so gloriously magnificent. Yes, it must have been decades since I sunk my paws into the moist ground outside, or lifted my eyes to the blue sky, or chased birds. I remember how, having caught them, I would ruffle their feathers, and lick their throats ever so playfully. 
Being locked here I have managed to squash these memories. I have grown quite resigned, somehow, to the stale perfume rising here, from these blankets, which she now gathers around her. 

Feline creature in Twisted

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"A sensitive melding of poetry, prose, and art"

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Continuing the travels through the portable museum!

Author of War Songs, Grady Harp is an artist representative, gallery owner, writer of essays and articles on figurative and all Representational art for museum catalogues and for travelling exhibitions, and an Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer. He describes himself as being ever on the alert for the new and promising geniuses of tomorrow. So I am deeply honored that he has posted this five-star review for my art book, Inspired by Art: Fall of a Giant:

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Uvi Poznansky dons another Technicolor coat in this latest series of books, always raising the bar for her high standard previous achievements. Originally from Israel where she studied Architecture and Town Planning then moving to the US where she studied Computer Science and became an expert in Software Engineering, Poznansky managed to combine the design elements of two studies into unique formats. And she has accomplished the same with the other side of her brain - making visual her ideas (she is an accomplished painter, drawer, and sculptor who has enjoyed exhibitions both in Israel and in California, her present base) and making words in poetry and in short stories and children's books.

Uvi has published an absorbing book series – The David Chronicles – and now is curating art collections to enhance the pleasure of her books’ stories. This volume, FALL OF A GIANT, follows her previous installment FIGHTING GOLIATH and is again one of the most complete collections of art from ancient through renaissance to contemporary is drawings, paintings, sculptures, etchings – works by Mantegna, Giorgione, Caravaggio, Gentileschi, Cagnacci, Pietro Novelli, Massimo Stanzione, Guercino, Jacob van Oost I, Tanzio da Varallo, Girolamo Forabosco, Simon Vouet, Bernardo Strozzi, Feti Domenico, Valentin De Boulogne, Claude Vignon, Johan Zoffany, Giovanni Lanfranco, Paul Cadmus, Gustave DorĂ©, Rembrandt, Castiglione, Ghiberti, Johann Liss, Antiveduto Grammatica, Hendrick ter Brugghen, Fra Filippo Lippi, Spinelli, Manfredi, Vaccaro, Matteo Rosseli, Poussin, and Chagall.– some well known, others – discoveries. The art is arranged not by artist but instead by the blow by blow action of the story of Dave heading Goliath. It is a majestic, learned, beautifully designed book that carries a lot of instruction, entertainment, as well as visual pleasure. But then that is what Uvi is all about! Grady Harp, February 17

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

He wanted so badly to hold her, kiss her, smell her hair

Our worlds didn’t match, Brayden longed to say. Those Skype calls were harder and harder to take when he wanted so badly to hold her, kiss her, smell her hair, taste her skin, feel her arms around him. 
“It was work, Brayden, but I loved you. We made it work. Then something changed, and you wouldn’t tell me what.”
Brayden stilled, disquiet buzzing madly in his mind as his body remained immobile. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” He would never tell her. What happened was too ugly. He would protect her, shield her, from the worst of himself. In a way, this visit was a test to see if he could handle being a civilian.
“You are lying.” She dropped her hands to her sides. “Secrets kill relationships. There has to be trust, Brayden. Even if you were to tell me that you can’t talk about it, or that it’s something you’re working through, I could accept that. You don’t have to tell me everything, but don’t lie.”
His gut knotted.  He started to apologize. He exhaled and let her see the truth in his eyes. “It’s something I’m working through.”
Her shoulders drooped forward. “Okay.”
“I,” he quickly reburied the memories. “I don’t want to be a problem, Zoe. Despite what it looks like,” he touched his hand to his hip, “I’m in decent shape.”
“You look great to me.” She tugged at the collar of her pink polo. “You have no idea what I imagined. I had to stop watching the CNN videos of injured men.  Each one became you.”

Excerpt from Returning Home by the Sea by Traci Hall
Included in Love in Times of War

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"This anthology consists of twelve wonderful stories with the inherent theme of love and war contained in them. Out of the twelve authors, Uvi Poznansky is the only one that I was familiar with previously. So, in addition to becoming acquainted with new authors in this set, my 'to be read' pile has grown considerably. That is not a bad thing with the wind chill of a minus 10 as I write this review!!" 

I sense a change in him, which starts with the scent of his aftershave

Tonight—the first moonless night of this winter—I can sense a change in Lenny, which starts, for me, with the scent of his aftershave. 
It’s Aqua Velva. It’s been a long time since I’ve caught it on him, and I can get a bit tipsy just by tipping over, like, to take it in. He grips the faded armrest and gets up, with some effort, from his corner, and puts on his fingerless leather gloves, with which he can type, especially on cold nights. Then he goes out to the balcony, and I can see him fumbling for something there, in the drawers of his desk. Finally he brings back a handful of tapes—I hope none of them is mine—and the tape recorder, which he sets up across from me, on the floor next to Beethoven’s bust. 
From down there Lenny turns to me, and I see the question in his eyes, like, Is it too late already, for the two of us? 
And aloud he says, “Anita? Want to dance?”
Over the last couple of months he hasn’t given voice to no anger, and neither have I, which I figure can’t hardly be bad, ‘cause without words any feeling—even rage—can peter out, so that one of these days, it’s gonna be left there, dull and limp, somewhere behind us. It can happen, ‘cause his son isn’t here between us, and time passes. 
Like ma used to say, Time heals all wounds. Which sounds pretty stale, but it must be true, ‘cause I’ve stopped thinking by now about my youth going to waste. Instead I’m thinking about the fact that I’ve stopped thinking about that. 
So in the end, we’re back where we started, almost. Lenny’s my man. He’s mine. Me, I’m his. All’s clear. Nothing gets confused. 
“Well?” he murmurs. “Do you?”
I reckon the reason he’s talking to me, like, under his breath, isn’t only because he’s unsure of me, of what I’ll say after the long, icy silence—but also because he can’t stand the echo, which seems to have moved in here with us lately. 
So I whisper, as soft as I can, “I do.” 
He inserts one of them tapes, and sets the tape recorder to Rewind, then Play. At first I almost expect my voice to come on, but then, by the spring in his step as he’s coming over, I figure it’s gonna be music. He reaches out to me, so I peel off his glove, and his touch feels nice, it’s warm and strong, the way I remember it. 

Anita in My Own Voice

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Friday, February 17, 2017

Awaken to the beauty of art

At no other season are our senses so acute as in spring. What better time to enjoy this new collection: series of six art books, available in a way that Grady Harp, the Hall of Fame Reviewer, calls A Portable MuseumIt contains a collection of art throughout the ages, around the story of David from youth to old age:
Besides being an artist and having worked as an architect, she taught art history, and this collection served as the basis for a study course analyzing the contrasts in viewpoints around the biblical story. 

This collection is arranged not by artist, nor by artistic style or era, but rather by moment-by-moment in the story, blow-by-blow, as imagined by various artists: Michelangelo, Bernini, Dali, Adrea del Verrocchio, Donatello, Titian, Rembrandt, Lorenzo Ghiberti, Rubens, Degas, and Barry Moser, to name but a few.

★ Love art? Give yourself a gift 

Volume IV: Inspired by Art: Fighting Goliath
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Volume V: Inspired by Art: Fall of a Giant
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Volume VI: Inspired by Art: Rise to Power
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Volume VII: Inspired by Art: A Peek at Bathsheba
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Volume VIII: Inspired by Art: The Edge of Revolt
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Volume IX: Inspired by Art: The Last Concubine
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Was he going to kiss her?

When she and Zach reached up at the same time, to grab a handful of prepackaged ornaments, Beth found herself nearly wrapped within his arms. And there it was again, Beth thought, when she searched Zach’s eyes. 
She held her breath. Was he going to kiss her?
Zach broke the spell when he abruptly pulled away. “Sorry.” Kyle was beginning to wander down the next aisle, and Zach scrambled to catch up with him.
Why was she suddenly feeling so disappointed? She barely knew the guy, Beth admitted to herself, halfheartedly. After counting out a half a dozen ornaments, she took in a shaky breath, before strolling over to where Kyle and Zach stood waiting near the checkout counter.
Before long, they were back on the road, with the radio switched onto a channel exclusively featuring Christmas music.

Excerpt from Two Hearts Unspoken by Tamara Ferguson
Included in Love in Times of War

Love Romance? Get this amazing collection
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"This anthology consists of twelve wonderful stories with the inherent theme of love and war contained in them. Out of the twelve authors, Uvi Poznansky is the only one that I was familiar with previously. So, in addition to becoming acquainted with new authors in this set, my 'to be read' pile has grown considerably. That is not a bad thing with the wind chill of a minus 10 as I write this review!!" 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

This winter it’s something new every day

This winter it’s something new every day. Today at sunrise I find Natasha in the closet, which is crammed with dozens of her old, glamorous gowns. Having sneaked into it, she stands there wide-eyed and completely nude, shivering slightly in the morning chill. 
A vein is pulsing on her breast. It’s blue, and so are the tips of her long, delicate fingers as she pulls a bunch of dresses down. Most of them slip off her arm, except for the slick, silvery dress, which she wore on her recital appearance in Paris, back in 1945, when both of us celebrated not only the victorious end of WWII but also our wedding.
Now, fascinated by the silky touch, she tries to put it on: first backwards, then inside out. In frustration, she drops the thing to the floor and starts thrashing around, kicking it, becoming entangled as fallen metal hangers clink furiously against each other. Her eyelashes flutter over her pale cheeks as she listens to the mad rhythm. 
I turn on the bedside radio and rotate the knob this way and that, in an attempt to find something, anything that will distract her from that noise. Oh, how about this: a song is playing, and to the sound of it I find myself rolling back into the dent of her body on the sheets.

I hug you softly, I kiss you in your dream
Your breath is warm, my lips are trembling
Let me wake you, are your eyes agleam?
I whisper your name, can’t you hear my heart breaking?

I reach to hold your smile
Here it comes, so sweet in the morning light
Love, let’s wait, wait for a awhile
Let’s cling together till the morning light

Hold me holding you
Burning, burning
Someone’s crying
Someone’s crying
Someone’s crying
And I think it’s me

At last, when all is quiet, she opens her eyes, turning her attention to something else: shoes. There are dozens of them, most with high heels, all strewn carelessly across the floor, remnants of times gone by.
“Don’t,” I say, hating myself for having to control her. “You can't wear these anymore.”
And she asks, “Why?”
I hesitate to tell her that nowadays she cannot walk in them without losing her balance. With a stubborn glint in her eye, she puts on a pair of stilettos and holds her breath, just standing there like a child, afraid to move. 
“Here,” say I, rising from the bed to set a pair of flats before her, so she can step into them. “They look like ballet flats, don’t they? With these, you’ll be able to move about. Want to dance, Natasha?”
“I do,” she whispers. “I so do.”

Lenny in Dancing with Air

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