Saying Goodnight Near Bethlehem by Christian Sammartino

Night and Day by Kelly Louise Judd
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Saying Goodnight Near Bethlehem

Shadows from the concrete factory
cling to our shoulders as we embrace
at the end of the driveway.

These secondhand silhouettes stretch across
summer lawns like the capes super heroes
wear in all my old comic books.

But this isn’t the episode on our storyboard
when we rescue suburbia from communists,
and foil plots to detonate a nuclear reactor.

Tonight is about her love demolishing
the Berlin Wall surrounding my soul,
until we are one united country.

Her lips slip me an alphabet of love
I didn’t know I was capable of writing.

Little ravens on her yellow sundress
wave their wings in the wind
as each letter appears.

Her mouth tastes like water
from a thunderstorm and the last
sip of an unfiltered lager.

One kiss makes me feel like
I can leap factory smokestacks.

This is the storyline where my heroine
braves my ghost town heart to conquer
the Kryptonite of my fears.

This is the comic strip where I rocket
up to heaven to gather enough starlight
to write her name in a constellation.

In this city south of Bethlehem,
we are the love we deserve.


Christian Sammartino

Christian Sammartino was born in Coatesville, Pennsylvania. He studied English Literature and Asian Religions at Elizabethtown College. His poetry is influenced by life in the Pennsylvania Rustbelt near his home in Coatesville and his experiences as an AmeriCorps Scholar. He has honed his writing through meditation sessions with the Elizabethtown College Meditation Club. His first collection of poetry, Keystones, was released by Rising Phoenix Poetry Press in December 2014.