Sheila-Na-Gig online


Michael Minassian

MICHAEL MINASSIAN’s poems and short stories have appeared recently in such journals as, Live Encounters, Lotus Eater, and Chiron Review. He is also a Contributing Editor for Verse-Virtual, an online poetry journal. His chapbooks include poetry: The Arboriculturist and photography: Around the Bend. His poetry collections, Time is Not a River and Morning Calm are both available on Amazon. His poetry manuscript A Matter of Timing won the 2020 Poetry Society of Texas’ Manuscript Contest (publication: Summer 2021). For more information:


(Deir El Zor, 1915)

There was no cake
or sweet drinks
no figs or dates

no white dress
or braided hair
flowers or rings

only a sliver of moon,
like a sinister smile
and a scrap of bread

no bigger than
a child’s ear
shared between

my grandmother
and her cousin
George dressed

as a young girl,
walking barefoot
across the desert

lined with bodies—
the skeleton’s hands
poking up from the sand

pointing east,
like stiff candles
burning in desert air.


In ancient manuscripts
all the angels were male,
messengers or murderers—
a smaller set of wings
protruding from the thighs
to cover their genitals
in a constant state of arousal—

Female saints consigned to rape
and torture or washing clothes
in rivers and lakes, beating the fabric
and their heads against the rocks,
depicting the first day of the week—
the one we call after the moon.
%d bloggers like this: