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Richelle Lee Slota: The Lonely Planet Guide to Death

93_ym_lonelyplanet1_bholtzman.jpg
Art by Bernice Holtzman 2022

The Lonely Planet Guide to Death

 

by Richelle Lee Slota

 

 

Nobody travels there

without getting there,

 

somewhere beyond the poisoned

air, the squalid cities,

 

my loving family living

amidst a million cooking fires

 

in the once-so-lush,

Ghanaian Rain Forest.

 

The last stop wasn’t Death,

only a year called Seventy.

 

Other passengers offer

the conundrum, Death is life.

 

No one has a clue,

When, where Death is,

 

exactly. My guidebook

has blank pages.

 

The only one who knows

for sure is the killer.

 

 

 

Richelle Slota (formerly Richard) grew up, a transgender girl in hiding. She endured a Marine Master Sergeant father and a rigorous Catholic school education, even briefly studying for the priesthood. She was drafted into Army in the spring of 1966. Bad timing. She writes plays, novels, nonfiction, and poetry. She has three grown children. She has a chapbook, Famous Michael, and she has published in Yellow Silk, Blue Unicorn, Silverfish ReviewQuercus, Plainswoman, DEROS, Blue Buildings, and Abraxas. Samisdat Press published her chapbook Famous Michael.


Bernice Holtzman’s paintings and collages have appeared in shows at various venues in Manhattan, including the Back Fence in Greenwich Village, the Producer’s Club, the Black Door Gallery on W. 26th St., and one other place she can’t remember, but it was in a basement, and she was well received.

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2022